First summer departure at Newcastle United likely as 26-game international bemoans Premier League bid

Getty Images
Newcastle United will listen to offers for Ryan Fraser - who has one year left on his contract - at the end of the season

Ryan Fraser has urged his Southampton teammates to buckle up ahead of the Championship promotion race.

The Saints have known their play-off fate for several weeks, with fourth spot guaranteed going into the final game. But losing 1-0 at home to Stoke City in a dead rubber was hardly ideal preparation for their upcoming semi-final against either Norwich City, West Bromwich Albion or Hull City.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

On loan from Newcastle United, Fraser, frozen out by Eddie Howe and forced to train with the under-21s, is expected to return to Tyneside this summer. But he previously admitted he plans a permanent move to Southampton regardless of what division they are in.

“I love it here,” he said earlier this season. “I love coming in every day, loving football again is nice. I try to gain as much each time I come in and I try and wear the badge with as much pride as I can. 

“I try to give as much as I can every day and not waste a second while I come in. At the end of the season, hopefully, I can stay. 

“That’s my main goal, to stay at the club, but there are a few goals to try to get there. First and foremost I aim to help the club get promoted and it would be nice to stay.”

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Fraser has now rallied his troops before their trip to Leeds United this weekend. The two clubs could end up meeting each other at Wembley for a Premier League spot.

“We can't be known as a team that is going to falter at the wrong time,” the winger said after losing to Stoke. “We’re going to come together, look at ourselves as a team and give everything for this club. 

“You could look at the play-offs as a new three-game tournament. None of the season matters anymore. We can start taking confidence from this massive week of training. We haven't had much training recently because it's all been about recovery. 

“We've got big characters in the dressing room and that's what it's going to take. Some of the boys are going to need arms around the shoulders. There will be times when it's not going to be great but we just need to stick together."

Related topics:

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.