Football - Adkins' pride at Ox

Southampton manager Nigel Adkins is proud of the way Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is developing but warned the winger that he and his Arsenal team-mates face a tough test at St Mary's on New Year's Day.

The 19-year-old is a graduate of the south coast club's fabled Academy system, following in the footsteps of players like Gareth Bale and Theo Walcott.

Oxlade-Chamberlain made his name under the tutorship of Adkins, helping Saints secure automatic promotion from npower League One in 2011.

Much has changed since the winger's £15million move to north London, with the teenager now an England international and Southampton once again back in the top flight.

Oxlade-Chamberlain makes his first return to St Mary's tomorrow and Adkins is proud of the winger.

"I think he will get a fantastic reception," the Saints boss said. "He is one of the players that came through out system.

"We are excited watching him played. We'd love him to still be at Southampton, but he is an Arsenal player now and an England international.

"I went to watch him against Reading the other night and he was exhilarating, with his acceleration to go away, a desire to get on the football. He is a joy to watch.

"I think everybody at Southampton is proud of what he is doing now.

"Everybody at the football club has had a role and a responsibility to play in Alex's development, but it is down to him as well. He is an exciting young talent."