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'If I speak from the heart, it won't end well' - Hojbjerg vows 'never again' after Southampton's record-equalling defeat

13:31 EAT 26/10/2019
Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg Southampton 2019-20
The 24-year-old shouldered the blame for a shambolic performance as Ralph Hasenhuttl's Saints were demolished 9-0 at home by Leicester

Southampton captain Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg has apologised to the club’s fans for their 9-0 thrashing at home to Leicester on Friday night, vowing: “something like this can never happen again”.

After Ryan Bertrand was sent off early on for a bad foul in the lead-up to the opening goal, Brendan Rodgers’ Leicester racked up a Premier League record-equalling scoreline.

Swathes of the home support had vacated St Mary’s by half-time as the home side went in 5-0 down, ratcheting up the pressure on manager Ralph Hasenhuttl.

"If I speak from the heart, I don't think it will end very well," former Bayern Munich man Hojbjerg told Sky Sports.

"I can only put my head, as the captain, in the front of the team, and say that the only thing that matters now is what we do going forward and we can never ever let something like this happen again.

"I don't want to talk, I don't want to... I can only apologise. It's very embarrassing and it's very difficult for the whole team and we are the ones to blame.

"You need to blame us, we need to take it. What can I say? I'm sorry, the only thing I can say to the fans is I apologise."

Hojbjerg’s message was clearly one of reconciliation, as the clearly downtrodden Denmark international reflected on one of the lowest nights of his career.

The 24-year-old shouldered the burden and reassured fans – whose mood could hardly have been improved by the downpour which accompanied the game – that the team would keep fighting as their season threatens to turn into a relegation fight.

“The people that come to support us every week, away and at home, who give us love, these are the ones you want to do it for,” Hojbjerg told the club’s website.

“These are the ones you want to get up again and get success for the club for. These are the people you play for.

“They have every right to be angry, to be disappointed, to be embarrassed. We need to show that they deserve better.

“First of all, we need to keep it inside the building, inside the dressing room. Second of all, the only thing that matters now is actions. I don’t care who’s coming up – something like this can never, ever happen again. Never.”

Southampton's next fixtures aren't looking any easier. They face a Carabao Cup and Premier League double-header with two away games at Manchester City, before fixtures with Everton, Arsenal and Watford.