Southampton: Jeremy Pied delighted to make return to action after injury struggles

Southampton defender Jeremy Pied in action against Bournemouth
Jeremy Pied (white shirt) started at right-back for Southampton against Bournemouth at Vitality Stadium

Southampton defender Jeremy Pied is enjoying life again after putting an injury-ridden year behind him.

The 28-year-old returned to action for Saints in their 1-1 draw at Bournemouth on Sunday following a knee injury which ruled him out for most of last season.

"It was nice to be back out there and I'm really happy to play and find more rhythm," he told BBC Radio Solent.

"Training's great, but the intensity of playing a Premier League game is really different. I gave my everything."

Former Nice and Lyon defender Pied arrived at St Mary's in August 2016 on a free transfer as then manager Claude Puel - now in charge at Leicester - began shaping his squad.

But an injury in training after making his debut on the opening day of that Premier League season prevented him from playing again until May.

Surgery was required on knee ligament damage and the Frenchman's return to action this season has been carefully managed by new boss Mauricio Pellegrino.

"Last season was really long, but now I just want to enjoy," he said after the draw at Vitality Stadium. "This is the life, sometimes you have problems like that.

"You have two solutions. You have to keep going and come back or you have to move on and leave.

"It's not in my mentality to leave. It was a long time out, but now I'm happy to be back on the pitch and have the chance to give my best for the team."

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