BLACKPOOL boss Ian Holloway believes Saints have promotion “in their blood” at the moment.
Holloway, below, is hoping to take the Seasiders back into the Premier League at the first attempt, after they were relegated last season.
Blackpool are currently seventh and right in the thick of the play-off hunt.
But Holloway knows they face a stern test at Bloomfield Road tomorrow evening against a league-leading Saints team who are chasing back-to-back promotions.
“Southampton know they need the points to secure a second promotion,”
“They have it in their blood at the moment.
They haven’t got any negativity around the place.
“We had a relegation and we had to fight it off. We had our best players taken and stolen. We had to get another group together. They haven’t got any of that. They are still on another roll.”
Holloway, above, admits he has been particularly impressed by the way Saints have gone about their season.
“In this fantastic division you have to be consistent and that is why Southampton are top – they have done it better than anyone else,” he said.
“Eight wins out of their last ten I’ve just found out.
“If Nigel Adkins (right) takes them up for a second successive year it will be a fantastic job and I will congratulate him.
“They haven’t done it yet, though.
“They have been phenomenal this year. I keep expecting them to blow up and they haven’t.
“That shows great togetherness, great squad, great management on and off the field, so well done to them. But I'll be saying it when they’ve done it.”
Blackpool go into the game on the back of a 3-1 defeat at Reading last weekend, but Holloway takes heart from his side’s performance at St Mary’s earlier this season when they were only denied
victory by a lastminute Rickie Lambert header, which earned Saints a 2-2 draw.
“My lads looked like they thought they couldn’t get back into it after Reading’s third goal,” said Holloway.
“My job is to make sure they don’t feel like that this weekend.
“Southampton are a few points better off than Reading so they look like a tougher ask.
“But we were two minutes off beating them when we went to their place when they hadn’t been beaten at home for ages.
“Unfortunately we didn’t win but we were good enough to.“ So I’ve got to work and make them believe and keep going.
“If we can win it will put us all in a better frame of mind because we want to be inside that top six.
“But any one of us at this club would have ripped our right arms off to be where we are now and that is the reality.”