(Reuters) - Southampton manager Claude Puel said his team will find it hard to maintain concentration levels with only two games in March and face a disadvantage against other Premier League sides that play more frequently.
With league games against Manchester United and Arsenal yet to be rearranged, Southampton face only Watford and Tottenham Hotspur this month, a period of quiet that will be followed by a more testing run of six matches in April.
“My biggest job now is to prepare the team for the difficulty of the calendar. We will play two games in a month after playing every three days since the beginning of the season,” Puel told British media.
”It’s crazy -- crazy for us and difficult. It’s difficult to keep good focus and concentration with a game every two weeks. That’s why this game is so important for us, and for the table.
“We’ve got to play against teams who play one game a week. All these are difficulties, they are good challenges, and we have to adapt to these conditions of the calendar.”
Southampton, who are 13th in the table, will look to move on from last weekend’s painful defeat by Manchester United in the final of the League Cup when they face 12th-placed Watford at Vicarage Road on Saturday.
Reporting by Shravanth Vijayakumar in Bengaluru; Editing by Catherine Evans