MANAGER Russell Martin credited his players and the Saints supporters as they made it six matches unbeaten with a 3-1 win over Birmingham City.

It is the first time the St Mary’s side have gone six without defeat since November 2020, and means October is the first unbeaten month since February 2022.

Taylor Harwood-Bellis, Charly Alcaraz and Adam Armstrong scored for the home side, with the latter negating Jay Stansfield’s strike with one of his first touches.

Martin’s Saints now have a full week to recover before they visit Millwall next Saturday, having gone up to fourth in the Championship before the matchday’s fixtures were complete.

Speaking to the Daily Echo after the match, Martin said: “It’s been a really nice run, and off the back of the run that came before that makes me even more proud of the players.

“The last few weeks have been incredible and it’s been beautiful to see the players smiling, and to see the belief has been brilliant to be a part of.

“It’s our job to keep it going, some really beautiful stuff and we started really well. They started the second half well but we wrestled control back.

“The goal is a really poor one to concede and I’m really annoyed about that, because Gavin (Bazunu) should have a clean sheet based off of the 60 minutes before that.

“We wobbled for 10 minutes but the subs helped us regain control. We deserved to win and should have scored a couple more goals. It is my job to be relentless with the players now.”

Saints were under the cosh for a period after Stansfield’s goal and this follows similar spells in previous matches, having conceded seven goals in the first 15 minutes of second halves.

Martin added: “At some point in the game, you have to respect the opposition and every team will have a spell. I want to be dominant for the whole 90 minutes but it’s tough to do that.

“We have to help the players and it’s always on the coaches to do that. We have to find a way to manage those moments and I’m convinced we will.

“The players really listen, everything we focused on and analysed after Wednesday night they were brilliant on today.

“Attacking gaps, top line runs and looking forward a bit earlier – they did it really well. I watched the first half with real gratitude, and the second half at times.”

On the Saints supporters, he said: “The fans have been amazing all week. The travelling that we have had this week, we can’t take for granted. I’m knackered so they must be.

“I feel like the connection with the fans is growing, we have scored three goals twice in the last three home games and Rotherham should have been more than that, I’ll talk about that all season.

“The fans have been brilliant. They stuck with us in a really tough period and they deserve that. Hopefully, we can keep growing.”