Jay Rodriguez reacts on Twitter after scoring for Southampton against Espanyol

Jay Rodriguez

Jay Rodriguez made his St. Mary's Stadium return on Sunday.

Southampton's preparations for the Premier League continued on Sunday with a 1-1 draw against La Liga outfit Espanyol at St. Mary's Stadium.

Ronald Koeman's side, who beat Vitesse 3-0 in the Europa League on Thursday, took on Espanyol on Sunday afternoon, and played out a draw against the Spaniards.

Salva Sevilla gave Espanyol the lead, before forward Jay Rodriguez marked his return to St. Mary's Stadium with an emotional goal.

The former Burnley star injured his knee back in April 2014, and having missed all of last season, he hasn't played at Southampton's home ground since that horrendous injury.

The 25-year-old struck a late leveller for the Saints in a goal which clearly meant a lot to Rodriguez, who has been ramping up his return from injury over the course of pre-season.

Following the game, Rodriguez took to Twitter to react to his goal, admitting that he was 'buzzing' to be back at St. Mary's Stadium after so long away.

 

Southampton lacked support in front of goal for striker Graziano Pelle last season, and the return of Rodriguez - who hit 26 goals in his two Premier League campaigns with the Saints - should be a welcome boost for manager Koeman.

It remains to be seen whether Rodriguez can return from his injury to be the player he was, but he has quality on the ball and composure in front of goal which shouldn't be affected.

Rodriguez ended pre-season on a high, and with the start of the season less than a week away, he will be hoping to kick on in the coming weeks and prove that he is just as good as he was before his injury.

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