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Season 2019-20
Southampton (a) Premier League

 

 
Date:
Saturday 7th March 2020, 3.00pm

Venue:
 St. Mary's Stadium

Conditions: Technological
 
Programme: £4 - one issue, with home and away covers; the latter printed upside down on what is usually the back cover.


 
 

Southampton

Newcastle

0 - 1

 

Teams

Goals

(41 mins Matt Ritchie penalty saved)

Half time: Saints 0 Magpies
0

79 mins Surrounded by a posse of players, Joelinton shepherded the ball back from the right hand touchline towards substitute Sean Longstaff, who swept a diagonal first-time pass infield from just inside the Saints half.

It looked to be too far ahead of any colleague, but Yan Valery crucially killed the momentum of the ball by clumsily chesting it down as he jogged towards his own goal. Allan Saint-Maximin sped past the defender and took a couple of touches before prodding home from eight yards via a post.
1-0


In the words of Richie Benaud - there's his flipper


Come on you boy in green


Full time: Saints 0 Magpies
1
 

We Said


"Strictly...." reveals first contestants for new series

Steve Bruce: 

"I'm very relieved. Arguably, we were better against 11. But of course, when a team is well-organised and drop deep and get behind the ball, it was difficult to break them down.

"But a little bit of magic from Allan, the only bit we really created in the second half. We had better chances in the first half, but the game really should have been out of sight by then.

"We had some wonderful opportunities, but did not take them.

"Today, VAR went for us a little bit, but I do not think that anyone who has seen the challenge would deny it was a red card. And the VAR ultimately got the big decisions right. That is what they are here for, it has gone for us today. Although we did not capitalise, it was the right decision.

"The penalty is a blatant handball. I didnít see it at the time, I have to be honest. But, it's a stonewall penalty.
 
"Whyís everybody getting their knickers in a twist? The decisions are right.

"VAR and the referee got it right itís a bad challenge and could damage Isaac
(Hayden). Itís damaged him, slightly, but not as badly as we thought. The boy is over the top of the ball.

"We have a had a tough time, but it's been a good week. There is a marked improvement.

"The three players brought in in January have helped us. It has been difficult, but 35 points with eight
(games) to go is good (it's actually nine).

"It's another one off, we are back running and again and it's decent.

"I said when
(Allan) Saint-Maximin walked in he will excite people. His natural ability is scary. He has a bit to learn too, and if he does, if he sorts the other bits out, we have a hell of a player on our hands.

"He is always a threat, wants to get past you and that is a dying art. He has that natural ability in abundance."

On Matt Ritchie:

"Iíve seen Ritchie smash them in, in training, and demanding that heís the penalty taker, like he demands everything! And heís missed. It happens to the best of us. I didnít watch it.Ē

On Martin Dubravka:

"(He) got a whack, but we think heís going to be OK.Ē
 
 

They Said


Ralph Hasenhuttl said:

"
I want to say, the atmosphere today was fantastic.

"The fans were unbelievable, they really pushed us and really helped us a lot with this fight, in the second half especially.

"I cannot criticise my team for not doing everything, they left everything on the pitch. It was a good performance on our side.

"We tried to stop the opponent and we did it for a long time but then one mistake can decide the game. I didnít have the feeling that they had a game plan, an idea of how they were going to score.

"We defended well, we were very compact and close to centre. The distances between the lines and the players was very good and it helped us to win a lot of balls in front of our box and had a few counter attack chances also.

"I think the most important thing was that we were more committed today and we had an understanding about us that we should have in every home game.

"It was a very good performance in the second half, but in the end the result is the only thing that is necessary and itís what we donít have.Ē
 

Stats


Following successes at Spurs, West Ham United and Sheffield United, the Magpies made it four PL away wins this season to date, emulating their tally for both the 2017/18 and 2018/19 campaigns.

Victory today saw Newcastle record three successive league wins against Southampton for the first time in their history.

The 464 minute PL barren patch endured during August and September 2015 couldn't have been exceeded today, but there was still   

United saw an opposition player dismissed for the first time in the Premier League since Huddersfield Town's Tommy Smith at SJP in February 2019.

The Magpies were awarded their first penalty kick of the season, but Matt Ritchie contrived to miss it - his second successive spot kick failure after Everton's Jordan Pickford denied him at SJP in March 2019.

Ritchie's last penalty conversion was also our most recent spot kick success in the Premier League - at home to Manchester City in January 2019.

The award of a penalty in our favour is remains a rarity - and we've now missed four of the five that have gone our way since returning to the PL in 2017, Joselu versus Burnley at home in January 2018 and Kenedy away at Cardiff City in August 2018.

Newcastle completed their first league double of the season and took six points off the Saints for the first time since the 2004/05 season.

Toon @ Saints - Premier League era:

2019/20: Won 1-0 Saint-Maximin
2018/19:
Drew 0-0
2017/18: Drew 2-2 Hayden, Perez
2015/16: Lost 1-3 Townsend
2014/15: Lost 0-4
2013/14: Lost 0-4
2012/13: Lost 0-2
2004/05: Won 2-1 OG, Carr
2003/04: Drew 3-3 Ameobi, Bowyer, Ambrose
2003/04: Won 3-0 Dyer 2, Robert (FAC)
2002/03: Drew 1-1 Bellamy
2001/02: Lost 1-3 Shearer
2000/01: Lost 0-2 No scorer*
1999/00: Lost 2-4 Shearer, Speed*
1998/99: Lost 1-2 Hamann*
1997/98: Lost 1-2 Lee
1996/97: Drew 2-2 Ferdinand, Clark*
1995/96: Lost 0-1 No scorer*
1994/95: Lost 1-3 Kitson*
1993/94: Lost 1-2 Cole*

* At the Dell, all subsequent games at St. Mary's.

 

Waffle

Allan Saint-Maximin ended United's prolonged goal drought and secured three valuable points with a rare win at St. Mary's on Saturday.

A defensive blunder allowed him to poke the ball past Alex McCarthy with eleven minutes remaining for our first Premier League goal in 439 minutes since fellow countryman Florian Lejeune netted at Goodison 46 days earlier.

Saint-Maximin was the only change to the starting line-up from Saturday's home draw with Burnley, Joelinton dropping to the bench as a consequence.

His second Premier League goal came as a massive relief to a green-clad Magpies side, who had struggled to find a way through the home ranks, despite enjoying numerical advantage from the 28th minute onwards.

At that point Moussa Djenepo was cautioned by referee Graham Scott for a reckless challenge on Isaac Hayden, but after a VAR call the referee viewed reruns on a pitchside monitor before upgrading the yellow to a red.

Jamaal Lascelles then saw an effort ruled out for offisde before VAR played a pivotal role in the contest for a second time, remote official Peter Bankes spotted a 41st minute handball by Sofiane Boufal in his own box.

To the delight of the travelling support, Scott belatedly pointed to the spot - only for McCarthy to dive to his left and turn away Matt Ritchie's penalty.

Half time somehow arrived with the game goalless; the penalty save only one of a host of gilt-edged chances made and missed by the visitors.

After a succession of early home corners came to nothing, Jonjo Shelvey's cross from the right prompted an incredible treble by McCarthy, denying Dwight Gayle (with his thighs) and Miguel Almiron (with his hands, twice) from barely six yards out.

Gayle then saw his 31st minute header saved before taking a left wing cross from Saint-Maximin three minutes later and wastefully blasting wide.

Despite that profligacy, United still seemed certain to take three points from the side with the highest number of home defeats and home goals conceded.

However Steve Bruce's side made heavy weather of securing what was a first league win in six outings and their fourth success on the road this season.

Despite constant possession in the second period, United lacked both threat and inspiration; aimlessly playing a succession of sideways passes, as yet another frustrating scoreless draw began to look inevitable.

At the other end, a rare home foray ended with Martin Dubravka in need of lengthy treatment after clashing with Danny Ings just before the hour mark.

The visiting custodian was hobbling visibly thereafter and Karl Darlow was sent out to warm up for some minutes. However United chose to use their second and third allotted replacements with outfield players and thankfully weren't caught out.

Southampton attempted to run the clock down but belatedly shot themselves in the foot on 79 minutes; Yan Valery hesitating and allowing Saint-Maximin to nip past him before tucking the ball home via a post.

That goal - and his acrobatic celebration - came in front of an away support who had roared their side on all afternoon and loudly celebrated a first Toon victory here since 2005.

The benefit of taking three points from the Saints was enhanced by defeats elsewhere for West Ham, Watford, Bournemouth and Norwich plus a draw for Brighton - all of which gave the Premier League table a much better look by Saturday night.

That's 35 points for us and the gap to 18th-placed Bournemouth is a healthy eight points, Aston Villa now the only team below us with games in hand.

In contrast to our other single goal victories this season when United have been inferior in possession terms, today saw Bruce's side clearly dominate and superficially justify his decision to dispense with five at the back. And going into the final stages we even played with a front four. Badly.

However the lack of creativity evident when in the ascendancy remains a concern; in simple terms, given ample opportunity to express themselves, they fluffed their lines and looked bereft of inspiration. VAR gave them a numerical advantage and free hit at goal and we still struggled to score.

Ritchie's penalty miss made it a day to forget for the player born barely 20 miles along the coast, but fellow contract beneficiary Jonjo Shelvey faded visibly after the restart when it looked set up for him.

As others have remarked, the fact that both players acquired three year extensions that take them into the red zone for player ages says much about the strength of Bruce's position here. Three points today reduces our risk of relegation further, but were we to do down, the Head Coach wouldn't change.

With Joelinton no more effective from the bench than when starting, it was left to Saint-Maximin to hit the vital shot - McCarthy's main involvement in the second half picking that ball out of his net.

Scoring that goal on the birthday of former favourite Hatem Ben Arfa led to some comparisons between the two French ball jugglers. While their styles may differ in some respects, the excitement and unpredictability that both brought to an austere United side cannot be underestimated.

Justifiable questions over the Joelinton signing have been asked, but while his value has plummeted that same scouting department brought in Saint-Maximin for a comparative pittance. At this club though, that sort of business only has a benefit if it's followed by a sale.

An enjoyable day and scoreline, but there's not much else beyond that.  

Biffa


Page last updated 10 March, 2020