By 90Min
February 20, 2018

Southampton striker Manolo Gabbiadini must be prepared to take his chances when they come, according to manager Mauricio Pellegrino.

The Italian has made just one start in the Saints' last nine Premier League games, and just 10 all season so far.

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The £15m signing from Napoli started extremely well on the south coast, gaining plaudits for his excellent positioning inside the box and deadly finishing with both feet, but under Pellegrino, Gabbiadini has not been afforded much consistency to excercise his striking instincts.

The Spaniard has persisted with Shane Long a lot this season, and also used Charlie Austin where possible, but now the 46-year-old has issued a challenge to the Italian international to make the most of the chances he will be given.

Despite adding another striker to his roster in Guido Carrillo in January, he said, as quoted by BT Sport: "Manolo has to be prepared; the players have to be really well-prepared. Our reaction on the pitch is about preparation before the game. It’s about what you did in your past, how you prepare every single week.

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"The attitude is a preview of the preparation to move to the action and this is the most important thing at this level.

"He played against Spurs at home and he didn’t have many chances but for me he’s a really important player for the club; we need him."

Southampton have improved slightly of latel, despite Gabbiadini's minimal role; they do sit in the relegation zone in 18th, but are only one win away from mid-table.

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