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‘Aribo ready to start games’ – Southampthon manager Russell Martin says after midfielders recent performance

Southampton manager Russell Martin says Super Eagles midfielder Joe-Ayodele Aribo  is ready to start games for his team following his performance vs Hull City.

Joe Aribo has struggled to make impact for both his club and country this season, with most of his appearances in the EFL Championship  and the recently concluded AFCON coming off the bench.

His performance at the AFCON 2023 tournament mirrored his club form, as he found it difficult to secure a spot in the starting lineup and failed to make a notable impact when given the opportunity.

However, determined to reverse his fortunes at the club, Aribo showcased his leadership qualities upon his return from Ivory Coast by wearing the captain’s armband when he came off the bench.

In a league clash against Hull City, the former Rangers midfielder demonstrated his importance to the team by scoring the Saints only goal in the 1-2 loss to draw praise from his manager.

“He was amazing; we have missed him so much. He showed that the other night when he came on, and I think he is ready to start games now, but he has been away for a while. He is a huge player for us, and you can see why; that is why he wore the armband in the second half when Adam went off,” Russell Martin said, as quoted by the Daily Echo.

Aribo’s goal against Hull City was his second of the season, and with Martin’s assurance of increased game time, the midfielder will look to regain his form and reclaim his place as a key figure at St Mary’s Stadium.

Despite Southampton currently sitting in 4th place in the EFL Championship table, trailing Leicester City by eleven points, Aribo’s resurgence could provide a significant boost to the team’s aspirations for the remainder of the season.

Southampton suffered relegation from the English Premier League, last season and will be hoping to get back to the big stage at the end of the campaign.

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