Category Archive: Southampton FC

Southampton FC News

Apr 24

Chelsea’s Antonio Conte says Premier League title would be his ‘greatest’ feat

• Manager wants to build side into a ‘real power’ for the future
• Conte aims dig at Manchester City and United over lavish spending

Antonio Conte would consider winning the Premier League title this season with Chelsea as the greatest achievement of his managerial career to date, with the feat carrying greater weight in the context of the lavish sums spent by both Manchester clubs last summer.

While City and United prepare for the derby at the Etihad Stadium on Thursday with Champions League qualification their priority, Chelsea can move seven points clear at the top of the Premier League with victory against Southampton on Tuesday at Stamford Bridge. Re-establishing that imposing lead would potentially inflict further psychological damage on second-placed Tottenham Hotspur, whom they beat in the FA Cup semi-final on Saturday.

Related: Antonio Conte’s new guard maintain Chelsea’s fighting spirit of old | Jacob Steinberg

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Apr 24

Romeu ‘not far off’ Kante – Puel

Southampton midfielder Oriol Romeu is “not far off” PFA Player of the Year N’Golo Kante, Saints boss Claude Puel says.

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Apr 24

Chelsea v Southampton

Preview followed by live coverage of Tuesday’s Premier League game between Chelsea and Southampton.

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Apr 14

Southampton v Manchester City: match preview

Claude Puel will be delighted if Manolo Gabbiadini returns – the Italian had scored nine times in his past eight games in all competitions for Napoli and Southampton before suffering a groin injury. It will be interesting to see if Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg, nurtured by Pep Guardiola at Bayern Munich and described by Puel as the “future” of Southampton, keeps his place against the side managed by his former mentor now that the club captain, Steven Davis, is approaching full fitness. Rich Flower

Kick-off Saturday 5.30pm

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Apr 13

Golden Goal: Dani Osvaldo for Southampton v Manchester City (2013)

The Argentina-born Italian endured a turbulent spell on the south coast but Osvaldo, now the lead singer of a band, will be long remembered for this strike

“From now on I can show how much I can do, and how well I can perform,” Dani Osvaldo said, after scoring his third – and last – Southampton goal, a peach in the very top right-hand corner: the proverbial postage stamp. It was a promising soundbite, but he failed to kick on from that sumptuous moment in December 2013 and instead head-butted his then-captain, José Fonte, in training, an incident that ultimately ended his career in England. Several subsequent short-term fixes were just that before he retired at the age of 30 last year. “Football was not happy, it is a world full of shit,” Osvaldo is quoted as telling Fox Sports. He continues to perform though, albeit in front of a different crowd.

Osvaldo is the lead singer in a five-piece band by the name of Barrio Viejo and the rock star he always wanted to be. One of the tracks from the band’s pending first studio album, Desorden, translates as “chaos” from Spanish. Throughout his 11-year football career, Osvaldo was a cover star too, no stranger to the glossy magazines, partly because of his relationship with his now ex-girlfriend, the Argentinian actress Jimena Barón.

Related: Football: The Knowledge – which footballers have released a record?

Related: How misguided were Southampton to think they could tame Dani Osvaldo? | Jacob Steinberg

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Apr 07

West Bromwich Albion v Southampton: match preview

Albion are keen to match the eighth-place finish of 2013, their best since 1981, and though their Europa League hopes are fast fading they should give Tony Pulis his first top-10 finish. The visitors, one place behind them, have little to play for but remain a yardstick. “Southampton are a fantastic model … they are a top-10 team and they have some brilliant players,” Pulis said. Mark Tallentire

Kick-off Saturday 3pm

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Apr 05

Yoshida and Ward-Prowse strike late as Southampton sink Crystal Palace

Within only 60 sloppy seconds all of Sam Allardyce’s hard work of late unravelled as Southampton restored those relegation worries for Crystal Palace by snatching victory here. Up until six minutes from time Claude Puel’s side were poor in front of goal before Maya Yoshida and then James Ward-Prowse popped up to defeat the visiting side.

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Apr 04

Southampton 3-1 Crystal Palace

Late goals from Maya Yoshida and James Ward-Prowse earn Southampton victory over Crystal Palace in an entertaining game at St Mary’s.

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Apr 01

Bournemouth’s Harry Arter left to regret penalty miss in Southampton stalemate

The emphasis in training on Monday for Bournemouth will almost certainly be on penalties. More anguish from 12 yards prevented Bournemouth from claiming their first win at Southampton after Harry Arter missed the decisive spot-kick in a match where they were often second best. It was Bournemouth’s 10th penalty of the season – no team have won more in the top flight – but they have now, remarkably, missed their last three.

Related: Southampton 0-0 Bournemouth: Premier League – as it happened

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Apr 01

Southampton 0-0 Bournemouth: Premier League – as it happened

Harry Arter launched a penalty into space, denying Bournemouth a first-ever win at Southampton.

7.22pm BST

So that’s that. This game was threatening to turn into a real stinker, but the last quarter was pretty entertaining. Bournemouth have never won at Southampton, but they should have today. They were gifted the softest of penalties, but Harry Arter slipped, kicked the ball with both feet, and sent it high into the stand. It was the second half of his ersatz David Beckham tribute act, and in that sense the more successful part: earlier on, he tried to score from the halfway line. Saints remain the top dogs in the south, then, but both teams are comfortable enough in mid table. Last word to Julian Le Saux: “I bet you thought nobody was reading your commentary. There are actually millions of us out here, hanging on your every word, but we’ve all been keeping quiet as a joke! April fool!”

7.19pm BST

90 min +2: Smith stands over it … and blasts it miles over the bar, an awful effort.

7.19pm BST

90 min +1: Fraser goes on a slalom run down the middle, and is bundled over from behind by Romeu. That’s the first booking of the match, and a free kick near the left corner of the Saints D.

7.17pm BST

90 min: There will be three added minutes.

7.16pm BST

89 min: Wilshere tries to Gazza his way into the Bournemouth box down the right. He’s easily hustled off the ball. But it’s the visitors who are finishing much the stronger.

7.15pm BST

88 min: Arter nearly makes up for the absurd penalty miss by sending a swerving shot towards the top right from 25 yards. It’s a lovely, sweet strike, but Forster tips it away at full stretch. That would have been a pearler, and some story.

7.13pm BST

86 min: Smith clatters into the busy Boufal out on the left. A free kick, and a chance to load the Bournemouth box. Bertrand’s delivery isn’t up to much, allowing Pugh to head clear purposefully.

7.12pm BST

85 min: Redmond makes good down the inside-right channel and sees his long-range effort deflected over the bar for a corner. From the set piece, Boufal twists and turns down the right, and sends a fierce cross in from a tight angle. Boruc does well to fist clear.

7.11pm BST

83 min: McQueen bursts down the left and does extremely well to dig out a cross from a tight position. Cook heads clear with Long winding his neck back behind him. Marvellous football all round.

7.09pm BST

81 min: Tadic is replaced by McQueen.

7.09pm BST

80 min: Afobe swans in from the right and sends a wild effort into the stand behind the goal. Remember: Bournemouth have never won at Southampton.

7.08pm BST

79 min: Arter slips as he reaches the ball. His left toe moves it half a turn forward, and his right blooters it miles over the bar! Beckhamesque!

7.06pm BST

78 min: Tadic loops long down the middle. Boruc comes out of his area and, under pressure from Romeu and Tadic, batters clear. Wilshere, on the counter, slides a pass down the right for Fraser, who enters the area and runs into the hanging arm of Bertrand. Jon Moss points to the spot! That’s a very generous penalty. There’s not much in that at all.

7.04pm BST

76 min: Bournemouth have an extra body in midfield now, and they look so much happier. A collective spring in their step, they’re first to everything right now. Saints look a little rattled at this sudden turnaround in the flow of the game.

7.02pm BST

74 min: More nonsense in the Saints area! Pugh sends Daniels scampering away down the left. Daniels returns the ball. Pugh must score, with time on the penalty spot. But his low shot is blocked, and after some pinball stylings, a clearance is made.

7.00pm BST

72 min: Chaos in the Saints box! First Fraser very nearly bustles clear down the middle. He’s crowded out, but the ball breaks back to Smith, who rushes in from the right and creams a shot off the base of the left-hand post from 25 yards! The rebound falls to Pugh, who can’t sort his feet out. Saints survive. But how?!

6.57pm BST

70 min: King is replaced by Arsenal and the London Media’s Jack Wilshere.

6.56pm BST

69 min: Soares slips a ball down the right for Tadic, who turns and chips a gorgeous ball further down the channel for Long. The Saints striker strides into the box, draws Boruc, and sends a floater over the keeper and inches wide of the goal. As near as anyone’s come.

6.54pm BST

67 min: A dreadful loose pass in the centre circle by King sends Saints on the attack. Boufal spins and spins down the left, all along the byline, and very nearly into the six-yard box. Francis does very well to usher him out of play just before a real chance presents itself.

6.52pm BST

65 min: Soares swings a fine cross in from the right. Long can’t rise above Cook to meet it with his head, eight yards out. Where’s Rodriguez when you need him?

6.51pm BST

64 min: Saints make a double change: Ward-Prowse and an unhappy Rodriguez off; Boufal and Long on.

6.51pm BST

62 min: Saints go up the other end and nearly punish Bournemouth for that ludicrous miss. Redmond sends a swerving shot straight at Boruc, who parries. The ball breaks right to Tadic, who attempts to steer a shot into the left-hand side of the net, but sends it well wide. But this is a lot better! More of this, please, teams!

6.49pm BST

61 min: What a miss! A simple long ball, with Saints asleep. King beats Yoshida to a high ball and races down the right. Bournemouth are suddenly two on one, with Afobe in the middle, all clear! The pass inside is fine. Afobe takes a heavy touch, and prods an uncertain effort past Forster and wide of the left-hand post. That was appalling!

6.47pm BST

59 min: Bournemouth hoick it long for Afobe, who makes a token effort at chasing it down the right, knowing full well he’s got no chance of beating Yoshida to the prize.

6.45pm BST

57 min: Did Arter try to score from inside his own half there? Please say no. It wasn’t clear what else he could have been trying to do, though. A through ball? But there was nobody there. The ball barely reaches the edge of the Saints area, anyway. Forster tidies up and has the good grace not to guffaw in the theatrical style.

6.43pm BST

56 min: This is a pretty miserable game. To think the poor home fans have waited the best part of two months for this.

6.42pm BST

54 min: After a long period of sterile possession in the middle of the park, Saints burst down the inside-right channel through Davis. He flips a ball inside for Rodriguez, on the right-hand corner of the six-yard box, but the striker’s gone too early and the flag goes up for offside before he can get a shot away.

6.39pm BST

52 min: Still raining.

6.38pm BST

50 min: Redmond skedaddles down the right wing before cutting inside and spraying a delightful crossfield pass towards Tadic on the left. Eventually the ball’s slipped towards Bertrand near the corner flag, and he whips a cross towards the near post. Rodriguez is sniffing about, but can’t quite connect.

6.37pm BST

49 min: Smith makes a bit of ground down the right but, with King and Afobe in the middle screaming for a pass, his cross doesn’t beat the first man Stephens.

6.35pm BST

48 min: A subdued atmosphere at St Mary’s now. Nothing much going on, you see.

6.35pm BST

46 min: With less than a minute of the half gone, Surman is hooked for Arter. Slightly strange. Surman tweaked something while miskicking in front of goal towards the end of the first half; it looks as though he’s tried to run it off, but couldn’t continue.

6.33pm BST

Right-o, here we go again! Bournemouth get the ball rolling for the second half. Neither side has made a change. Afobe goes up for a high ball, and looks to have come back down to earth, bang on his coccyx. Ooyah oof. He’s up and about again soon enough.

6.22pm BST

Half-time quiz. Events at Madeira Airport earlier this week will have no doubt reminded Saints fans of the great Ted Bates statue debacle. Anyway, poor old Cristiano Ronaldo is the latest victim of a professional sculptor phoning it in, and to mark the occasion, we knocked up the following quiz. Enjoy!

Related: Who are the footballers celebrated in these statues? – quiz

6.18pm BST

The half ends with a couple of corners for Saints, who push hard for the goal their overall dominance has deserved. But it doesn’t come. Not a classic, but that doesn’t mean the second 45 can’t be the half of the season. Faith! See you in ten minutes!

6.16pm BST

45 min: Saints come straight back at Bournemouth, Rodriguez chasing after a long punt down the inside-right channel. He takes a stride into the area and sends a sweet dipping volley over Boruc and towards the top left. But the keeper manages to arc backwards and tip the ball over the bar. The corner leads to nothing, though Yoshida falls to the floor under pressure from Afobe, and there’s a weak shout for a penalty kick. Nope.

6.14pm BST

44 min: Gosling and Tadic get tangled up down the Saints right. The ball pings out of play, and that’s a corner for the hosts. The set piece is whipped towards the near post by Tadic. Yoshida rises high, and attempts to steer a header into the top left, but sends it flashing wide.

6.12pm BST

42 min: Forster looks to be in full-on flap mode today. Here he comes racing through a crowded area to punch clear a long Fraser hoof. All he achieves is the clattering of his own man Stephens to the ground. The punch was awful, and very nearly broke to Afobe, 12 yards out. But it’s eventually cleared. And it looks as though the momentarily confused Stephens will be all right after a fashion.

6.10pm BST

40 min: Some scrappy rubbish on the edge of the Saints area. Neither King nor Afobe can get a serious shot away, and the danger, such as it was, is gone.

6.09pm BST

38 min: Ward-Prowse busies himself down the inside-right channel, and pulls a pass across for Tadic on the edge of the Bournemouth box. Tadic takes a touch, shifts himself to the left, and clips a lovely shot off the outside of the left-hand post. Goal kick, but a few inches to the left, and that was whistling into the net past the rooted Boruc.

6.08pm BST

37 min: Davis tries to up the tempo. A flick on the edge of the Bournemouth area doesn’t quite come off. So he picks up the rebound and sends Bertrand scampering towards the byline down the right. A low, driven cross is hacked clear by Cook, with Romeu lurking.

6.06pm BST

35 min: Surman injured himself in making that lunge. He’ll be OK to continue by the looks of it, but there’s a couple of minutes of treatment.

6.05pm BST

33 min: … Francis heads weakly goalwards. Forster comes off his line and flaps. Surman sticks out a leg, six yards from goal. He doesn’t connect, but Forster misses the ball altogether, and is relieved when Davis clears off the line.

6.03pm BST

32 min: King strips the ball from a dozing Ward-Prowse in the centre circle. He tears off down the left, and is tugged back by the Saints man. No booking. What a nice man Jon Moss is. A free kick, though, and the lump into the box is headed behind for a corner on the right by Stephens, with Fraser lurking. And from the set piece…

6.01pm BST

30 min: Bournemouth are working their way into this game at long last. So much so that Pugh attempts, and nearly perfectly executes, a Cruyff Turn out on the left touchline. Soares isn’t fooled and puts a stop to his gallop. But this is a little better from the Cherries, who are finally enjoying their share of midfield possession.

5.59pm BST

28 min: Daniels earns another corner for the visitors, down the left off Soares. The set piece is punched weakly upfield by Forster. Gosling is in space, 20 yards out. Anything on target, through a crowded box, could cause trouble, but he skelps a dismal effort over the crossbar.

5.57pm BST

27 min: Bournemouth go up the other end and win their own corner. That proves a nonsense as well. This game hasn’t quite sparked into life yet. Plenty of time.

5.57pm BST

25 min: It’s raining quite a lot. Saints stroke it around the back awhile. All of a sudden, Ward-Prowse bursts down the middle, feeds Rodriguez further along the channel, and it’s a corner. The award is met with ironic cheering at goal volume. That’s the most fun Southampton can extract from the situation, for the actual set piece is a waste of time.

5.54pm BST

23 min: Saints have been well on top, but they nearly gave up the first big chance of the match here. A long ball down the Bournemouth left sees King scamper into a lot of space. For a second, it looks like he’ll be breaking into the Saints area and shooting, but Stephens comes across to cover magnificently, snuffing out the danger.

5.52pm BST

22 min: Redmond is a talent. He bursts through a small space down the middle of the park, and looks to slip Bertrand clear down the right, but Pugh clips him to the floor. Just a free kick; Jon Moss really is in a kindly mood this evening. The resulting free kick is lofted towards the Bournemouth box, then Romeu cushions a tame header straight into the arms of Boruc.

5.50pm BST

19 min: Redmond sails down the left wing with ease. He cuts inside and passes square towards Rodriguez. The ball doesn’t reach Rodriguez; rather it’s deflected towards the left-hand corner of the six-yard box. Rodriguez is the first to react, and very nearly smashes a shot goalwards from a tight angle. But Cook is over to cover, and that’s a corner. Or at least it should be. The referee points for a goal kick.

5.48pm BST

17 min: Bournemouth are second to everything right now. Tadic slips a ball down the left for Rodriguez, who drops a shoulder to power inside, and blasts a shot towards the near post. Boruc stoops to gobble up the shot. It’s surely just a matter of time before Saints score; Bournemouth simply haven’t turned up yet. That international break really has jiggered their rhythm.

5.46pm BST

15 min: Redmond tears down the left in a fever, and whips a low curling ball into the Bournemouth box. Rodriguez is free! He puts the ball in the net, at the second attempt, after Boruc smothers his first sidefoot from the penalty spot. But the flag’s gone up for offside. It’s the correct decision. Bournemouth were ludicrously open there.

5.44pm BST

14 min: All a bit scrappy. What can you do.

5.43pm BST

12 min: Bournemouth are struggling to retain any sort of meaningful possession. Gosling sloppily concedes the ball to Romeu, who sends Rodriguez scampering into a lot of space in the Bournemouth half. But having drifted out to the right, and with Redmond free in the middle, he hesitates and the danger is gone. That looked a promising break for a few seconds.

5.40pm BST

10 min: Cook requires a bit of treatment after over-stretching in a tackle on Rodriguez. It looks like he’ll be OK to continue, but Eddie Howe looked concerned for a minute there.

5.39pm BST

9 min: A long ball down the middle is headed by Rodriguez out to the right, allowing the busy Tadic to stride into the box and lash a low shot across Boruc and out of play to the left of goal. This is all Southampton.

5.38pm BST

8 min: Tadic, playmaking from deep, rakes a ball down the inside-right channel for Rodriguez. The Saints striker nearly breaks clear but Daniels is on his shoulder and the danger is snuffed out.

5.37pm BST

6 min: A free kick for Bournemouth out on the left, and a chance to load the box. Fraser’s free kick is easily cleared by Yoshida. Redmond looks to punish Bournemouth on the break, but he’s tugged back by Smith as he races upfield. You’ve seen bookings for that, too. The referee is being very lenient during these opening exchanges.

5.36pm BST

5 min: Saints have started brightly, though. Ward-Prowse crosses from the right for Tadic; not quite. Then Tadic curls one in from the left and nearly finds Rodriguez, who can’t connect properly from ten yards.

5.35pm BST

4 min: The ball drops to Tadic, 25 yards out. There’s no real danger, until Francis inexplicably drops off instead of closing down his man. It’s a preposterous decision, and gives Tadic time and space to step forward and line up a shot from the edge of the box. Given the generous opportunity, he probably should score. Or at least get his shot on target. But instead he sends a witless blooter high into the crowd.

5.32pm BST

2 min: Fraser looks to turn Bertrand down the right, and is upended from behind for his trouble. A little more time on the clock and you suspect that could have been a yellow card. But it’s early, so there’s no fuss. The resulting free kick is in the middle of the park, and leads to nothing.

5.31pm BST

And we’re off! Saints get the ball rolling. And then there’s a bit of head tennis in the middle of the park. The home supporters giving it plenty. Hey, they’ve been patient, they’ve earned the right.

5.27pm BST

The teams are out! Southampton are in their favoured red and white stripes, so Bournemouth can’t get away with their usual red and black garb. The visitors are in second-choice blue. Pompey blue, if you fancy ratcheting it up a notch. There’s a fine atmosphere at St Mary’s. No wonder, since it’s a local derby, though in addition the hosts have waited a long while to sing their songs: Saints haven’t played a home game since West Ham won 3-1 here in early February.

5.19pm BST

Claude Puel speaks! “It is always difficult to play just every two weeks. Bournemouth have had just three players away for the international break, so were able to work with everyone. By contrast, we have had 15 players away. It is always difficult. But it’s important we keep focus. The statistic [that Bournemouth have never won at Southampton] is not for me. I think it is important to keep a good focus, they are a good technical team, and I respect them.”

5.13pm BST

Eddie Howe speaks, and begins by addressing why London media obsession Jack Wilshere remains on the bench. “The last few games, we’ve created chances and looked solid at the back. The players are in good shape. We’re confident we can carry on where we left off. We’re aware of our record here [Bournemouth have never won at Southampton] and it’s something we want to break. We’re fighting for points.”

4.39pm BST

It’s pretty much as you were for both teams. Southampton make the one change from the side sent out to a narrow 2-1 defeat at Tottenham before the international break. And it’s enforced. Jay Rodriguez takes the place of the injured Manolo Gabbiadini.

Bournemouth meanwhile name the same XI who started the 2-0 victory over Swansea a couple of weeks ago. It’s seven points from the last nine for the Cherries, so hey, if it ain’t broke.

4.36pm BST

Southampton: Forster, Soares, Stephens, Yoshida, Bertrand, Davis, Romeu, Ward-Prowse, Tadic, Redmond, Rodriguez.
Subs: Clasie, Long, Caceres, Boufal, Hojbjerg, McQueen, Hassen.

Bournemouth: Boruc, A Smith, Francis, S Cook, Daniels, Fraser, Surman, Gosling, Pugh, King, Afobe.
Subs: Arter, Brad Smith, Stanislas, Allsop, Wilshere, Ibe, Cargill.

9.53am BST

They take turns being top dog down south. Portsmouth were the dominant force during the late 1940s and early 1950s. Southampton became the daddies in the 1970s and 1980s. Portsmouth were in charge again during the 2000s. And now, should Bournemouth win at St Mary’s this evening in the Dorset-Hampshire derby, the Cherries will leapfrog the Saints in the Premier League pecking order and take over as reigning kings of the south coast. Temporarily at least. It’s all to play for!

Of course, this Saints-Cherries rivalry, while very much local, is not particularly intense. Not compared to the vicious Saints-Pompey affair, anyway. Little in the way of history between the clubs, you see. Since Bournemouth reached the top flight for the first time in 2015, they’ve beaten Saints once and lost to them twice. Other than that, Saints did the double over them in League One in 2010/11, and knocked them out of the League Cup that same year too. Beforehand, Bournemouth triumphed in a League Cup tie in 1987, but then we have to go back another thirty years or so for some semi-regular Third Division action. Here, the events of 1957/58 look particularly tasty: Bournemouth won 5-2 at Dean Court, while Saints triumphed 7-0 at the Dell.

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