sport

Adkins doesn't fear the axe

Southampton boss Nigel Adkins is paying little attention to speculation suggesting he is working on borrowed time.

Saints have been unable to pull themselves clear of relegation trouble over the festive period, with one win in eight meaning only goal difference is keeping them out of the drop zone.

Pressure is believed to be steadily mounting on Adkins' shoulders, with Southampton struggling to get to grips with life back in the Premier League.

A move for a more experienced coach has been touted, but Adkins insists he remains fully committed to the post - with no-one inside the club suggesting that his job is on the line.

"The speculation does not affect me at all," he said ahead of a crucial clash with fellow strugglers Aston Villa on Saturday.

"People always get linked, whether that be players or managers.

"I have to focus on being manager of Southampton Football Club. It's a position I am proud to have. In this league, we have young managers and experienced managers.

"Every manager is scrutinised and we all want to win. We are together as one here, and you have to keep striving to be successful."