Southampton boss hails Aribo after grabbing injury-time winner

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Southampton manager Russell Martin has labeled Super Eagles midfielder Joe Aribo a brilliant player following the injury-time winner he grabbed for his side in their 4-3 win over Birmingham in a Championship fixture played at St. Andrew’s.

The Nigeria international came on as a substitute for Will Smallbone in the 70th minute and helped the Saints grab the maximum points.

In the 96th minute, the 27-year-old put Taylor Harwood Bellis’s corner kick home to help Southampton return to winning ways after three consecutive defeats across all competitions.

Martin was impressed by the performance of the Nigeria international and revealed the reason behind not starting him in the encounter.

“The lads love him, the fans love him. Hopefully, everyone’s really seeing what he has to offer,” he told reporters.

“He was amazing on against Liverpool, he probably deserved to play, but he hadn’t played 90 minutes for a long time and was absolutely hanging on Thursday.

“He’s a brilliant player and an even better character, and for him to score the goal – I said to him there’ll be a chance for you at some point.

“I was completely guessing, but I hoped, and it’s fallen to him and he’s tucked it away.”

Aribo has made 26 appearances across all competitions this season and will be hoping to play a vital role for the Saints heading into the final months of the season.

The Hampshire-based currently occupy one of the playoff spots in the Championship, sitting in fourth position presently with 70 points gathered from 35 games.