Ralph Hasenhuttl hails Southampton defender Armel Bella-Kotchap after his dominant performance

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Ralph Hasenhuttl hails Southampton defender Armel Bella-Kotchap after his dominant performance in their victory over Chelsea but the Austrian is left concerned over goal-scorer Romeo Lavia’s hamstring injury

  • ¬†Ralph Hasenhuttl singles out Armel Bella-Kotchap after 2-1 win over Chelsea¬†
  • Southampton boss praises the defensive display of the 20-year-old German¬†
  • Small concern over hamstring injury to midfielder¬†Romeo Lavia from the match¬†¬†
  • Saint’s secured all three points thanks to goals from Lavia and Adam Armstrong¬†

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Ralph Hasenhuttl has hailed the performance of Armel Bella-Kotchap in Southampton’s 2-1 win over Chelsea on Tuesday night.¬†

The Saints manager singled out the 20-year-old summer signing for an impressive defensive display where he used his dominance to keep Chelsea at bay and secure all three points for Hasenhuttl’s side.¬†

His performance summed up Southampton’s youthful exuberance, which saw them come back from 1-0 down to win the game thanks to goals from Romeo Lavia and Adam Armstrong.¬†

Ralph Hasenhuttl was pleased with the performance of Southampton's Armel Bella-Kotchap

Ralph Hasenhuttl was pleased with the performance of Southampton’s Armel Bella-Kotchap

German defender Bella-Kotchap celebrates Southampton's 2-1 win over Chelsea on Tuesday

German defender Bella-Kotchap celebrates Southampton's 2-1 win over Chelsea on Tuesday

German defender Bella-Kotchap celebrates Southampton’s 2-1 win over Chelsea on Tuesday¬†

However, it Bella-Kotchap who Hasenhuttl was singing the praises off after the game and championed his defender’s physical capabilities.¬†

¬†‘When you see the physical quality he has it is perfect for the Premier League,’ said Hasenhuttl. ‘And this is what we hoped for in the summer.

‘I was more questioning if he had the right mindset but it seems the Premier League is so interesting for him and he is fully focused.’¬†

It’s an opinion shared by BT Sport pundits Jermaine Jenas and Saints legend Francis Benail, who both spoke on the German’s performance after the impressive win.

Bella-Kotchap received praise for a dominant display in defence where he kept Chelsea at bay

Bella-Kotchap received praise for a dominant display in defence where he kept Chelsea at bay

Bella-Kotchap received praise for a dominant display in defence where he kept Chelsea at bay

‘He is one of five or six players that have had an instant impact.’ Benail said.¬†

‘What we’ve been seeing is maturity beyond their years. He takes up great positions and recognises danger.’

While Jenas was pleased with Bella-Kotchap’s maturity and how he took charge of the game.

‘He has authority in the way he plays, how aggressive he is in the tackle and his positional sense, you always want one leading the way and he seems to want to take that mantle at 20 years of age.¬†

‘He played well against united too and their scouting keeps producing.’

Southampton's Romeo Lavia goes down with a hamstring injury that set to rule him out

Southampton's Romeo Lavia goes down with a hamstring injury that set to rule him out

Southampton’s Romeo Lavia goes down with a hamstring injury that set to rule him out¬†

The was only one small negative to the victory, with fellow new recruit Romeo Lavia suffering an hamstring injury that Hasenhuttl is waiting to hear news of. 

‘Everything is very positive except a worrying hamstring injury for Romeo (Lavia), who hopefully will not be out for too long.’¬†

The 55-year-old did though credit the Southampton fans at St Mary’s and described how they got Saints over the line in the closing stages of the match.¬†

“The atmosphere tonight was sensational. That carried us over the last 15 minutes when we were sometimes under pressure.’¬†