Although the appointment of Nigel Adkins has seemingly had a major bearing on Southampton’s rise up the League One table, the loan capture of Richard Chaplow could be considered equally important.
Chaplow signed on an initial one-month loan deal from Preston at the end of September and has featured in their six league games since.
Southampton have won on five of these occasions, with their only slip up coming in an away defeat at Huddersfield.
This run which has seen the Saints take 15 points from a possible 18 has seen them rocket up the League One standings.
After sitting in the relegation places at one point, they now occupy one of the play-off spots and are just two points adrift of second-placed Huddersfield.
Southampton may have ten points to make up on leaders Brighton, but they have still been supported into 11/4 to win League One this season.
And Chaplow may have an even greater role to play on reeling in Brighton after extending his loan agreement at St Mary’s.
His initial deal meant that Chaplow should have returned to Preston after the recent win over Dagenham and Redbridge, but an agreement has now been reached which enables him to stay until the end of December.
Southampton will then have the chance to potentially reach a permanent deal in the January transfer window, which is something that Adkins may be keen to do if Chaplow’s impressive run continues.
Despite their solid league form, Southampton will have the opportunity to start a cup run in their next fixture as they host League Two Shrewsbury in the first round of the FA Cup.
Southampton are 4/11 to beat Shrewsbury, although they may have to be on their guard as the visitors have scored 12 goals in their eight League Two away games.
Shrewsbury knocked Southampton out of the League Cup in their last meeting in 1994. See the full Southampton vs Shrewsbury match betting odds market.