Wed, 08 Jul 2020

Hampshire [UK], June 4 (ANI): English football club Southampton FC have signed a two-year contract extension with Irish forward Shane Long on Thursday.

Long had been approaching the end of his pre-existing deal this summer but is now set to remain with Saints until the end of the 2021-22 season.

The striker has been with the club since the summer of 2014, recently making his 200th appearance for the team and he has been an important part of Ralph Hasenhuttl's squad since the manager took the helm 18 months ago.

Eight of his 35 goals for Saints have come under the Austrian's guidance with Long making 43 appearances in that time.

"I love the way the club is run, I love what the club stands for and I'm excited about what the club will do over the next couple of years," Shane Long said in a statement.

"I can see the club pushing up the league, back to where we all want to be, and I want to be part of that. I'm just delighted to get it done," he added.

On the other hand, Hasenhuttl termed Long as an outstanding professional and vital member of the squad.

"He has scored some big goals for us and helped to create many more for his teammates too. I think that is one of his top qualities. He is a great team player, and someone who has a positive impact on the group as a whole when he plays," Hasenhuttl said.

"He is also a player who sets the right example for our youngsters to follow in how he conducts himself on and off the pitch, so this is good news for us that we will have him as part of the squad for another two years," he added.

Southampton were at 14th spot with 34 points when the Premier League season was suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic. Liverpool was at the top of the standings and was 25 points ahead of the second-placed Manchester City. Liverpool is just two wins away from lifting the title.

However, the league had confirmed its return date as June 17 and all the matches will be played behind closed doors.

On Wednesday, Tottenham Hotspur has reported one positive case for the COVID-19. The individual's name was not disclosed due to medical confidentiality. (ANI)

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