May 9, 2018 / 5:09 AM / 2 months ago

Soccer: Late Swansea hotel switch motivated Southampton - Hughes

(Reuters) - Southampton manager Mark Hughes said the last-minute cancellation of a hotel booking ahead of their Premier League survival battle against Swansea City on Tuesday had given the team extra motivation to win at the Liberty Stadium.

Soccer Football - Premier League - Swansea City v Southampton - Liberty Stadium, Swansea, Britain - May 8, 2018 Southampton manager Mark Hughes before the match REUTERS/Rebecca Naden

Substitute Manolo Gabbiadini’s scrappy goal after 72 minutes settled a tense clash in South Wales that helped Southampton take a big step towards top-flight safety.

A day before the game, Southampton had been forced to swap hotels from one near the stadium to another near Cardiff due to the threat of a virus.

“I’m not for one minute suggesting that Swansea City had anything to with that,” Hughes said.

“I think it may be overzealous Swansea fans in a position to affect our hotel booking, maybe. But you can use those things to your benefit and use them as a motivating factor.”

Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru; Editing by Peter Rutherford

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