Dejan Lovren wants other Premier League clubs to show Southampton more respect after their excellent start to the season.
The Saints have surprised fans who bet on football, losing just one of their opening nine games to sit fifth, ahead of the likes of Manchester City and Manchester United.
Croatian centre-back, Lovren, who joined from Lyon for £8.5million in the summer, has played a key role in that dream start. He has been part of the best defence in the league, one that has conceded just one goal every three games.
It is worth remembering that Southampton were playing in League One just three years ago. Lovren believes Mauricio Pochettino’s side have proven they are already an established Premier League club.
“To concede just three goals in nine games in this league is very hard so we deserve the respect now from the others,” he told Sportske Novosti.
“But it’s the whole team, not just the four in defence and the goalkeeper. It’s each player; we all work hard on the training ground. It’s a pleasure to play every day with these players.”
It is no surprise, then, to hear Lovren has no regrets about his move to the south coast of England. “I made the best possible move by coming to Southampton,” he added.
Southampton will be desperate to continue their promising start and ensure they do not fall away, as less-fancied sides before them have.
While they have already been to Liverpool and Manchester United and come away with results, their biggest challenge will come when they travel to Arsenal and Chelsea back-to-back in the next month or so.
Come through those games unscathed and football betting fans will start to believe they can top their best Premier League finish of eighth.