Mauricio Pellegrino remains focussed on trying to steer Saints to a good FA Cup run despite their precarious Premier League position.

While other managers in and around the top flight drop zone have spoken of prioritising Premier League survival and made few apologies for the team selections ahead of this weekend’s fourth round matches, Pellegrino is taking a different approach.

He hopes to use the positive momentum another Cup win could bring to invigorate his players ahead of a massive double header against relegation rivals Brighton and West Brom.

Saints host Watford at St Mary’s this afternoon, and Pellegrino even admits he would rather a replay if he had to so long as Saints make it through to the last 16.

He said: “The same opponent but another competition, another history. Why? No one has anything to lose. It’s for us or for them.

“In 90 minutes or maybe 180 minutes we have to do everything to try to move to the next round.

“There is no table. There is no speculation.

“We want to win but to win we need to play well, much better than them, and we are focused on this.”

Saints have had a morale boosting week, with a draw against Tottenham followed up by the club record signing of striker Guido Carrillo.

“I think this game was important for the way we compete,” said Pellegrino of the Tottenham draw.

“We have to do a lot of things in the future to improve our season but we felt that we are growing in the last three or four games in defence and attack and we have another opportunity to try to move forward.

“We want to move to the next round.

“Obviously we will have an opponent with a new manager, new motivation, good player. “Something unexpected can happen because we don’t have much information about them.

“We have to be focussed in our job in attack and defence and this is our main role now.”

Saints only met Watford in the league a couple of weeks ago, and were denied victory by a controversial handball equaliser right at the death.

For Saints, the challenge is to try and produce performances against the likes of Watford that they have managed against the Premier League’s top teams.

“I think because maybe it’s more comfortable for our style to play against this team, it’s not always about a lack of mentality,” reflected Pellegrino.

“Against Watford or Palace I think we play well but not in some aspects, they were stronger than us. Palace first 45 minutes we play well. Against Watford more or less the same.

“When you pick a good result it changes everything, the analysis.

“Behind the results our analysis is we are growing in the last five or six games.

“When we draw against Tottenham people think a good result. When we draw against Huddersfield people say it’s not a good result.

“We have to continue growing and improve more, especially with the ball to increase our confidence because our players have this capacity and now we have this opportunity.”