SAINTS have got the balls out for the first time in pre-season training as the majority of the squad returns to Staplewood.

Manager Russell Martin leads training on a newly laid pitch at the club's training ground with six weeks until the 2024/25 Premier League season.

Some internationals are yet to have returned - or at least be pictured - while the likes of Charly Alcaraz and Armel Bella-Kotchap are unseen.

But here is what we can learn from the new clips of Southampton's first pre-season training session...  

Colin Calderwood plays a big role in organisation and coaching

Colin Calderwood and James Bree in trainingColin Calderwood and James Bree in training (Image: Southampton FC)

One of the first clips we see shows former Northampton Town assistant Calderwood barking orders in the middle of the training pitch.

Adam Lallana and Sam Amo-Ameyaw, two players at opposite ends of their careers, listen intently to the 59 year old.

Calderwood joined Saints in October 2023 and initially acted as a sounding board for Southampton's young management.

Martin had tried to get Calderwood on board at both MK Dons and Swansea City before he finally agreed to move to Saints.

His role deepened throughout last season and he will be a key part of the dugout in the Premier League at St Mary's.

In the training clips from this week, Calderwood is seen moving James Bree to exactly where he wants him with a gentle hold and push.

Russell Martin really likes young winger Sam Edozie!

Sam Edozie smiles during pre-seasonSam Edozie smiles during pre-season (Image: Southampton FC)

"He's the best player in world football," Martin quipped, as Edozie completed his part of the training drill at Staplewood.

The 21 year old smiled to himself strolling back to his position, before putting his hands on his hips and taking a deep breath.

Manchester City academy product Edozie has been in and out of the team in each of his first two seasons as a Saints player.

He scored six goals in the Championship last season and will be looking to register his first notch in the Premier League next month.

Depending on what system Saints play - especially if it is three-at-the-back - Edozie might have to further adapt and develop to be a big part of plans.

However, it could be a big season for the £8million England youth international to make his mark in the top flight. 

All outfield players doing the same ball work in training

Defender Nathan Wood during training drillsDefender Nathan Wood during training drills (Image: Southampton FC)

Whether it's Adam Armstrong, Kyle Walker-Peters or Jack Stephens, all players are doing the same ball work on the first day of pre-season.

Martin expects competency in possession all over the pitch and this is reflected in the squad's training habits.

The players are seen dribbling up and around a mannequin at speed, turning and passing before receiving and laying off another short pass to a teammate.

A lot of managers would have their players just doing shuttle runs at this point of pre-season but Martin's work is heavily ball-oriented.

Players first arrived back for testing at Staplewood last week and were seen put through their paces then, with many slumping in the dugouts by the end.

Martin has promised Saints will attack the Premier League in their way, and that means domination of the ball and courage playing out. 

New signing Ronnie Edwards making a good first impression 

Ronnie Edwards looks strong in trainingRonnie Edwards looks strong in training (Image: Southampton FC)

"Yes, well done" an unidentified coach shouts from the background, as new signing Edwards dribbles past the mannequin and fires a quick pass.

Edwards, 21, is experiencing his first training sessions as a Premier League player following his £3million move from Peterborough last week.

He looks quick, energetic and tidy in the few clips we see - and that matches what we know about him as a defender. 

Edwards will be hoping to persuade Martin to give him his Premier League debut next month but faces plenty of competition.

Nathan Wood, 22, is also pictured in the drills having signed from Swansea City for £3million this month - in addition to regulars Stephens and Taylor Harwood-Bellis.

Jan Bednarek is yet to return to Saints having been given an extended holiday due to his participation in EURO 2024 with Poland. 

Returning Ross Stewart hoping to play a big role this season 

Ross Stewart is still looking for his first Saints goalRoss Stewart is still looking for his first Saints goal (Image: Southampton FC)

Last season's marquee striker signing Stewart has played a bigger role in the pre-season media content than he did in last season's football campaign.

The 27 year old arrived injured but a cruel setback upon his return in November meant he did not play again until May.

He came on as a substitute in matches versus Leeds and West Brom but was left on the bench for the final two games of the play-offs. 

Scotland international Stewart cost Saints nearly £10million and scored 10 goals in 13 Championship matches the previous season.

There has still been no update on the future of Che Adams, now out of contract at Saints, so Stewart could play a key role.

Saints will look to add reinforcements to their forward line but Stewart will want to remain fit and healthy to challenge for starts.

It will be a big ask to step up from League One to the Premier League with just over a dozen second-tier appearances in between. 

All players involved as seen in order of appearance:

Dom Ballard, Jack Stephens, Sam Amo-Ameyaw, Adam Armstrong, Adam Lallana, Taylor Harwood-Bellis, Nathan Wood, Tyler Dibling, James Bree, Ryan Manning, Ross Stewart, Charlie Taylor, Ronnie Edwards, Kyle Walker-Peters, Joe Aribo, Sam Edozie, Sekou Mara, Alex McCarthy, Mat Lis.