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Clattenburg controversy won't affect us – Saints

CONTROVERSY surrounding referee Mark Clattenburg and Adam Lallana must not affect Southampton's FA Cup clash with Burnley, according to assistant manager Jesus Perez.

It is understood that Southampton lodged a complaint with Professional Game Match Officials Limited (PGMOL) in the wake of the 2-1 defeat at Everton on December 29.

Southampton are understood to have claimed referee Clattenburg verbally abused England midfielder Lallana.

Assistant manager Perez has vowed Saints will not let the developing situation affect their preparations for hosting high-flying Championship side Burnley at St Mary's Stadium on Saturday.

"Our way always is when the game is over, it's time to think about the next game," said Perez.

"So our full focus is to prepare well for the next game, then to ensure we're in the best condition for the next match.

"That's our style since we came to England.

"When you are in this business you have to be aware everything is possible.

"We're in the best league, the best environment, in terms of business and media, so we have to respect everything because everyone is proud of this business.

"So it's not difficult for us: we focus and we put our players away from the problems and just think about the football."

Burnley sit second in the Championship standings, and will have in-form ex-Southampton academy striker Danny Ings on show on the south coast.

Refusing to go into detail on Saints' complaint to PGMOL, headed up by Mike Riley, Perez said he expects the club to find out more in the next few days.