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Southampton boss Ralph Hasenhuttl believes the show must go on despite coronavirus

Back in contention: Saints midfielder Armstrong PICTURE: GETTY

RALPH HASENHUTTL would be in favour of Premier League matches being staged behind closed doors during the coronavirus crisis.

The Southampton boss believes top-flight chiefs should take any measures necessary for this term’s league programme to be completed.

Saints expect tomorrow’s trip to Norwich to be staged as normal, but Hasenhuttl admitted the club is ready to help contain the spread of the virus.

Asked how he would feel about matches being played without fans, Hasenhuttl said: ‘I think it’s for sure not the same sport. When you play like that it feels more like a training game.

‘But if we can manage to end the league with playing behind closed doors then it would help I think for the competition, it’s important. I think the break that will come after this game is important. All we have to do in the moment is to do everything possible to make sure the virus is not spreading so quickly. This is the goal we all have.

‘If it helps to play without supporters or anything else we have to do this and deal with it. This is the most important thing at the moment, and everything else is not so interesting.

‘At the moment it looks we have a normal game on the weekend. So we have to try to focus as much as possible on the game.’

Midfielder Stuart Armstrong is back in contention for the trip to Norwich, having recovered from concussion.

And after last weekend’s 1-0 home loss to Newcastle, Hasenhuttl has challenged Saints to move another step closer to Premier League safety.

‘The players know this is another important game,’ said Hasenhuttl. ‘We know it will be a very difficult game but we also know what is at stake.’