League Cup - Hooiveld keen to emulate Swansea

Southampton can follow in Swansea's footsteps and win the League Cup, according to defender Jos Hooiveld.

PA Sport Report
League Cup - Hooiveld keen to emulate Swansea
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Jos Hooiveld, Southampton

In just their second season in the Premier League, the Welsh side lifted the cup at Wembley after romping to a 5-0 win against Bradford.

It capped quite a rise for the Swans and it is success Hooiveld is confident Southampton can replicate this season.

They too are in the second season back in the top flight and are eyeing success in the cup competitions.

Mauricio Pochettino's side overcame Bristol City 2-0 on Tuesday night to reach the last 16 and centre-back Hooiveld is ready for whoever awaits them.

"That doesn't matter," the Dutchman said of the upcoming draw.

"I think we know have a great team and whatever they throw at us we have to deal with, because we want to get there in the end.

"What Swansea did last year, we want to do this year."

To do that, Saints will need a vastly improved performance to that shown against Sean O'Driscoll's side at a sparsely-filled St Mary's.

Gaston Ramirez's exquisite volley was all they had to show from a first half they dominated, allowing City a way back into the game.

Saints' defence held firm and eventually Hooiveld nodded home to secure safe progression with seven minutes remaining.

"It was nice," he said. "It was just one of those games we had to win and get through to the next round. That's what cup football is. It's not always pretty. It was a hard-fought battle.

"It was very entertaining. They played at one moment all or nothing.

"They did very well. It was about half an hour that we were in a lot of trouble. Luckily we didn't concede, we had great saves from Kelvin Davis and we got through it. That's what's important."

It was no surprise Saints struggled at times given Pochettino made 11 changes, with Jay Rodriguez and Adam Lallana the only starters from Saturday's surprise win at Liverpool included in the squad.

While keen to win the cup, the Saints boss is using the competition as a way to blood in youth players and keep squad men, like Hooiveld, fresh.

"It's always nice to get games, especially at the moment when we've had five games and I've not made a start and not made an appearance," he said.

"It's good to get 90 minutes. Last time [in the Capital One Cup] I was ill, which was a bit unfortunate."

Bristol City also made changes for the clash at St Mary's, with Stephen McLaughlin handed his full debut.

The Irishman, on loan from Nottingham Forest, impressed for the Robins, whose performance against Saints belied their position in the League One relegation zone.

"It was good to get 90 minutes under my belt and I thought the team played well," McLaughlin told Bristol City Player.

"We had a period for 20 minutes in the second half when we kept the ball well and had a number of good chances.

"If we can play like that at the weekend against Colchester United then I'm sure we'll do well.

"We just want to get that first league win now to kick-start the season."

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