Saints would have no problem if referee Mark Clattenburg was selected to take charge of another of their matches in the near future, according to Saints boss Mauricio Pochettino.
Saints complained to both the refereeing body the PGMOL and the FA over comments Clattenburg allegedly made to Adam Lallana after failing to award a late penalty in the defeat at Everton. Both bodies ruled in favour of Clattenburg but the resulting furore has made it difficult to envisage the official being handed another Saints game any time soon.
However, Saints boss Pochettino, speaking for the first time about the complaints, insisted he had no problem with the referee taking charge of his club again.
“It would not be a problem if we had Mark Clattenburg again refereeing us,” he said.
“We would try to help as much as we can. We know refereeing is a very tough job that demands a lot and we try to have a very good relationship with him, a very impartial game and a very fair game which is what we all want from this game.”
He added: “For me the matter was over a long time ago.
“Now we need to look to the future and help referees as much as we can.
“I take full responsibility for what I said about that game but I think now it is time not to dwell on it, we get over it and we have to focus on the future.
“If we ever do come across Mark Clattenburg again we will try to make things as easy as possible because we know it’s a tough job.”
Though it was the club rather than the player that made the formal complaints, Lallana himself has been the subject of criticism from sections of the media and the footballing public.
But Pochettino says the midfielder has taken it all in his stride and moved on.
“The whole matter with Clattenburg has been forgotten and it hasn’t affected him at all,” he reported.
“Adam is a very strong player mentally so he has completely forgotten.
“I think sportsmen in general quickly forget about things such as these and referees as well are also sportsmen and they forget about it as well so it’s in the past, it’s history.
“Our main focus right now is to learn from it.
“We are fully aware to be a referee is very tough, it’s a very demanding job, but we also have the right to complain whenever we feel we have been hard done by in certain situations.”