Tag Archives: Southampton

Memorable Matches: Southampton 3-3 Newcastle United (May 2004)

Goalscorers: Shola Ameobi 7, James Beattie 19, Lee Bowyer 35, Titus Bramble 39 OG, Leandre Griffit 88, Darren Ambrose 90

Teams:

Southampton: Alan Blayney, Stephen Crainey, Claus Lundekvam (Darren Kenton 36), Fitz Hall, Paul Telfer, David Prutton, Fabrice Fernandes (Leandre Griffit 81), Yoann Folly, Anders Svensson, James Beattie, Brett Ormerod (Kevin Phillips 74)

Newcastle United: Shay Given, Oliver Bernard, Titus Bramble (Michael Bridges 90), Aaron Hughes, Steven Caldwell, Gary Speed, Darren Ambrose, Lee Bowyer, Kieron Dyer (Laurent Robert 75), Shola Ameobi, Alan Shearer

Referee: Graham Poll, Attendance: 31,815

The final issue of the 2003-2004 season left up for grabs was who was going to finish in fourth position and therefore, claim the final qualifying spot for the following season’s UEFA Champions League. Newcastle United arrived at Southampton off the back of a disappointing 1-1 draw at home to already relegated Wolverhampton Wanderers. They had to win at St Mary’s to force a final day showdown at Anfield with their qualification rivals, Liverpool FC.

Newcastle made the better start against a Saints’ side that were cruising towards the end of the season. Shola Ameobi showed greater strength in a tussle with Claus Lundekvam and once he won that, he finished coolly into the bottom corner past Premier League debutant Alan Blayney in the Southampton goal. Blayney was appearing because a virus had struck down no.1 keeper Antti Niemi.

Southampton had nothing to lose and it wasn’t like Newcastle had the best defensive record, so this match always looked like it was going to promise goals. Three more were scored in the first half to ensure the sides went it 2-2 at the break. First, James Beattie tapped in after Shay Given failed to hold onto Anders Svensson’s shot. 10 minutes before half-time, Sir Bobby Robson’s team were back infront. Lee Bowyer arrived late in the box to smack a strike past Blayney. It was only Bowyer’s second Premier League goal of the season since joining from West Ham United in the summer of 2003.

Southampton were the better team though for the majority of the first half, especially after getting onto level terms and they ensured that is how the teams’ would be at the interval. Fabrice Fernandes fired a cross into the box which clumsily went into the net off the leg of Titus Bramble. Once again, defensive errors were costing Newcastle dear as it had for most of their league campaign.

The goals might have dried up in the second half but the action certainly didn’t. Steven Caldwell crashed a header against the crossbar and when Darren Ambrose’s drive from distance ended up with a similar outcome, the travelling Toon Army support must have begun to think it wasn’t going to be their night. More so when Blayney made remarkable saves to deny Alan Shearer and Bowyer.

Then, with three minutes left, Southampton sealed the Magpies’ fate. Substitute Leandre Griffit shook off Oliver Bernard and squeezed the ball in-between Given’s legs for his first Premier League goal. Newcastle were never going to score two goals in stoppage-time, were they? They managed one, with Ambrose drilling one home with basically the last kick of the match but it finished 3-3 and that sealed Liverpool’s Champions League spot. Robson would last another five matches before being dismissed in late August 2004. Southampton lost their final match of the season at Charlton and would ultimately finish in 12th position.

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Premier League Files: Simon Charlton

Premier League Career: Southampton (1993-1997), Bolton Wanderers (2001-2004), Norwich City (2004-2005)

Making over 500 appearances in a career that spanned 18 years, Simon Charlton was a player who never took the limelight at any of his clubs. However, he was a well-respected figure by the supporters of the teams he represented and was a consistent performer throughout.

Frequently deployed as a left-back, Charlton began his career with his hometown club, Huddersfield Town. During that stint, he demonstrated the capabilities to play as a central defender or even in midfield. It was this versatility that helped win stay with clubs and play in prominent squad positions.

He moved to Southampton in June 1993 for £250,000 but barely figured initially under Ian Branfoot at the Saints. His PL debut came in a 2-0 defeat to Blackburn Rovers, over five months after arriving on the south coast. However, he went onto make 114 Premier League appearances at The Dell, scoring twice. One of those goals was in a narrow defeat to Manchester United in May 1995.

Three years later, Simon dropped down a division to Birmingham City and would spend three campaigns in the second-tier, eventually escaping Division One with Bolton Wanderers in 2001. On his return to the top-flight, he appeared in 36 of the Trotters’ 38 Premier League matches in 2001-2002. Bolton avoided relegation and Charlton was chosen as the club’s Player of the Year. As Bolton started to improve under Sam Allardyce and more continental stars arrived, it wasn’t a surprise to see him slip down the pecking order at the Reebok Stadium.

He moved to Norwich City in 2004 but couldn’t avoid relegation with the Canaries in his first season with them. He fell out with boss Nigel Worthington and was released on a free transfer in 2006. On his departure, he fired parting shots at Worthington, claiming he had been made a “scapegoat” for the team’s indifferent performance that season. He spent one year at Oldham Athletic before retiring from the game. After playing, Charlton served time as a youth coach back at Norwich before going into management for a season at non-league Mildenhall. He now works in media as a commentator and summariser for Bolton Wanderers matches for BBC Radio Manchester.

Great Goals: Matt Le Tissier – SOUTHAMPTON vs. Newcastle United (October 1993)

Matt Le Tissier was a one-club man and a player who loved to score spectacular goals. Time and again, he would come up with mastery trickery that dazzled opponents and left supporters gasping with shock and delight.

In October 1993, manager Ian Branfoot disagreed. He was unhappy with Le Tissier’s approach, especially when it came to defensive duties and training regimes so he dropped him. This decision angered the Southampton fans who already were rebelling against Branfoot’s negative tactics.

For a televised match at home to Newcastle United, Branfoot recalled the Saints’ hero to the starting line-up and at 0-0 in the early moments of the second half, he scored one of the great individual Premier League goals. Receiving the ball from an Iain Dowie knockdown, Le Tissier took complete control. He flicked the ball over two advancing Newcastle defenders in Barry Venison and Kevin Scott. With both out of the game, this gave the attacking midfielder his moment. Although he scuffed the shot slightly, it easily beat Mike Hooper and Southampton led with a moment to savour from their iconic leader.

15 minutes later, Le Tissier scored another memorable goal which wasn’t quite on the levels of his first goal for skill but even he admits was a cleaner contact in terms of the finishing strike. He netted 25 goals in 1993-1994 as Southampton narrowly avoided relegation. There were many more memorable moments to come in seasons to follow from the ‘Super Saint.’

Premier League Rewind: 11th May 2002

Results: Arsenal 4-3 Everton, Blackburn Rovers 3-0 Fulham, Chelsea 1-3 Aston Villa, Leeds United 1-0 Middlesbrough, Leicester City 2-1 Tottenham Hotspur, Liverpool FC 5-0 Ipswich Town, Manchester United 0-0 Charlton Athletic, Southampton 3-1 Newcastle United, Sunderland 1-1 Derby County, West Ham United 2-1 Bolton Wanderers

Although the destiny of the championship had been settled a few days earlier, there was still some issues to address on the final day of the 2001-2002 season. The main factor at stake was the final relegation spot. Who would be joining Derby County and Leicester City on a one-way ticket to the First Division?

The favourites to join them in the second-tier were Ipswich Town. George Burley’s side had finished fifth the previous campaign but apart from a brief revival early in 2002, they had failed to find the form that took them so close to UEFA Champions League qualification in 2000-2001. They went to Anfield and had to win to stand any chance of survival.

Liverpool FC were in no mood to be easy either. Midweek results meant a victory here would guarantee their best-ever finishing position in the Premier League of runners-up. They had beaten Ipswich 6-0 at Portman Road in February and another thrashing was on the cards when John Arne Riise fired Liverpool into an 11th minute lead. Ipswich did hit the bar and the Reds’ lost Steven Gerrard to a groin injury which would destroy his World Cup hopes. However, as soon as Riise doubled his tally just before the half-hour mark, the Tractor Boys’ fate was sealed. A mistake from Titus Bramble allowed Michael Owen to score a third seconds into the restart and further goals from substitute Vladimir Smicer and Nicolas Anelka put the seal on the 5-0 final scoreline. Ipswich went down and Liverpool FC had beaten Manchester United in a final league standings table for the first time since 1990.

Ipswich’s nightmare on Merseyside meant Sunderland would survive, regardless of their result at home to Derby County. Kevin Phillips scored the opening goal and although Derby equalised, these sides would be playing in different divisions in 2002-2003. It was a worrying drop for Peter Reid’s side though – a fall of 10 positions on their previous two seasons.

It was a day of parties and celebration at Highbury. Arsenal’s midweek magic at Old Trafford had meant they’d won the double for the second time in four years. Thierry Henry scored twice in an entertaining 4-3 final day victory over Everton to pip Alan Shearer and Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink to the Golden Boot award. It was the first of four occasions that the Frenchman would come out on top in this race. At the end of the match, Tony Adams lifted aloft the Barclaycard Premiership title which confirmed Arsenal were back at the summit of English football. Adams and Lee Dixon would announce their retirements from professional football shortly after the celebrations had concluded.

Another player saying farewell was Matt Le Tissier. ‘Saint Le Tiss’ had struggled with injuries for the past couple of seasons and had already played his last game for the club. However, he received a guard of honour and presentations on-field before Southampton’s final match of the season which was a 3-1 victory over Newcastle United.

At Old Trafford, there were no trophies to lift at the end of an unsuccessful season but David Beckham did sign a new contract on the eve of a sterile goalless draw between the former champions and Charlton Athletic. Beckham would only feature in one more Premier League season before joining Real Madrid in the summer of 2003.

After 111 years, Leicester City played their final match at Filbert Street before moving to the Walkers’ Stadium (later known as the King Power Stadium). They ended on a high – beating Tottenham Hotspur 2-1. The ground was demolished a year later. Elsewhere, Leeds United overtook Chelsea on the final day to finish fifth after beating Middlesbrough 1-0. David O’Leary was sacked though in June and Blackburn’s 3-0 triumph against Fulham ensured a top-10 finish on their return to the top-flight.

What else happened in May 2002?

  • Tragedy hits the rail industry with the fatal accident at Potters Bar railway station. A points’ failure was to blame, leaving seven dead and 76 injured.
  • After 21 years, Andrew Lloyd Webber’s award-winning musical “Cats” appears for the last time of its original run at London’s West End. It is revived in 2014.
  • Star Wars Episode II – Attack of the Clones debuts at cinemas.
  • Latvia wins the 2002 Eurovision Song Contest, held in Tallinn, Estonia.
  • African newcomers Senegal stun holders France to win 1-0 in the opening match of the 2002 FIFA World Cup.
  • After 26 years of occupation by Indonesia, East Timor regains its independence.
  • McLaren’s David Coulthard wins the Monaco Grand Prix for the second time in his career. It is the last time a team other than Ferrari will win a Formula One event for 10 months.

Iconic Moments: Saints thrash Black Cats (October 2014)

Sunderland arrived on the south coast in October 2014 boosted from their first Premier League win of the season a fortnight earlier at home to Stoke City. What happened next went down as one of their worst days in Premier League history. They left humiliated, shell-shocked and embarrassed as Southampton routed the Black Cats 8-0.

The writing was on the wall from an early stage. Saints took the lead through a nightmare for Santiago Vergini. The hapless full-back managed to smash the ball into his own net from 20-yards out. The reaction from his fellow defenders afterwards spoke volumes.

Sunderland were 3-0 down by the interval as the home side’s attackers had a field day. Graziano Pelle scored twice, there were two further own goals and midfielders Dusan Tadic, Jack Cork and Victor Wanyama all managed to get on the scoresheet too. Southampton had 11 shots on target in the game and eight of them found the back of the net.

It was Sunderland’s biggest defeat in 32 years. Manager Gus Poyet was understandably fuming afterwards, admitting: “It is the most embarrassing game I have ever been involved in.”

Things didn’t improve much at the Stadium of Light as the season progressed. Poyet was axed in March after a 4-0 loss at home to Aston Villa and Dick Advocaat somehow managed to galvanize the players to beat the Premier League drop again.

However, some of the Sunderland players who featured on this day have had to deal with being on the end of one of the Premier League’s most one-sided games in the last quarter of a century.

Memorable Matches: Southampton 2-3 Manchester United (September 2012)

Goalscorers: Rickie Lambert 15, Robin van Persie 22, 86, 90, Morgan Schneiderlin 54

Teams:

Southampton: Kelvin Davis, Nathaniel Clyne, Jos Hooiveld, Jose Fonte, Daniel Fox, Morgan Schneiderlin, Steven Davis, James Ward-Prowse, Adam Lallana (Jay Rodriguez 78), Jason Puncheon (Emmanuel Mayuka 74), Rickie Lambert (Guly do Prado 75)

Manchester United: Anders Lindegaard, Rafael, Nemanja Vidic, Rio Ferdinand, Patrice Evra, Antonio Valencia, Tom Cleverley (Paul Scholes 61), Michael Carrick, Shinji Kagawa (Nani 61), Danny Welbeck (Javier Hernandez 71), Robin van Persie

Referee: Mike Dean, Attendance: 31,609

In the summer of 2012, Robin van Persie elected not to sign a new contract at Arsenal. With just a year left on his current deal at the Emirates Stadium, the Gunners’ had little choice but to sell him or risk losing him a year later for absolutely nothing. Both Manchester clubs expressed an interest in signing the Dutchman but it was United who beat City to his signature. It was the kind of move that Sir Alex Ferguson made which brought about echoes of his purchase of Eric Cantona 20 years earlier.

Van Persie had scored on his home debut a week earlier against Fulham and was hungry for more in the Red Devils’ next match which was a trip to newly-promoted Southampton. Wayne Rooney was missing through injury whilst David de Gea was dropped after two indifferent performances for Anders Lindegaard.

Lindegaard couldn’t keep a clean sheet though. Southampton started brightly and took the lead on 15 minutes. Rickie Lambert outjumped Rafael at the back post to nod home his second goal of the season. A fortnight earlier, Lambert had scored against Manchester City in a narrow 3-2 defeat. This time, he was hoping to be on the scoresheet in a winning contribution against a Manchester side.

The lead didn’t last long though. Antonio Valencia’s cross found Van Persie and displaying his usual predatory instincts; the marksman beat Kelvin Davis on the half-volley. It was a cracking game with chances at both ends and the scores even at half-time.

Like the first half, it was Nigel Adkins’ side that started stronger following a break in play. They caused Ferguson’s team huge problems on the counter-attack. Lambert’s cross headed into the back of Lindegaard’s net by the efficient Morgan Schneiderlin. With Tom Cleverley struggling against James Ward-Prowse in midfield, Ferguson decided to bring on experience in Paul Scholes in the 61st minute. It was another inspired move. Scholes immediately started to spray passes across the pitch and completely took control of the central midfield battle.

In the 68th minute, Jos Hooiveld made a clumsy challenge on Van Persie and Mike Dean had little option but to give a spot-kick. However, the usual reliable Dutchman was too casual with his penalty on this occasion. Davis was able to stop his chipped effort. Van Persie though would not be denied. His late double cruelly denying the Saints’ at least a point from a gripping encounter. His first Manchester United hat-trick meant he had already started repaying the £24m transfer fee spent on him by Ferguson.

Any debt had been welly and truly repaid by the season’s end. RVP was top scorer for the second season running and spearheaded Manchester United to a 20th league title in what turned out to be Sir Alex Ferguson’s swansong season. Southampton controversially dismissed Adkins in mid-January but comfortably survived under the guidance of a certain Mauricio Pochettino.

Premier League Rewind: 17th-20th January 1998

Results: Barnsley 1-0 Crystal Palace, Blackburn Rovers 5-0 Aston Villa, Coventry City 2-2 Arsenal, Leeds United 1-2 Sheffield Wednesday, Leicester City 0-0 Liverpool FC, Newcastle United 2-1 Bolton Wanderers, Tottenham Hotspur 1-0 West Ham United, Wimbledon 0-0 Derby County, Everton 3-1 Chelsea, Southampton 1-0 Manchester United, Liverpool FC 1-0 Newcastle United

On the weekend of 17th-20th January 1998, no-one seemed likely to catch Manchester United. A fifth Premier League title in six seasons looked more likely for the Red Devils’ with every passing week. However, every top team has a bogey ground over the years and theirs was most definitely the Dell.

Having been beaten in April 1996 by the ‘grey shirt’ debacle and then humiliated 6-3 just six months later, Sir Alex Ferguson must have feared the Monday Night visit to the south coast. He was right too. Kevin Davies headed the hosts’ infront inside three minutes before an extraordinary display from Paul Jones, who made save after save to inflict back-to-back away defeats on the champions. It was the third successive season Manchester United would leave Southampton’s ground empty-handed.

Chelsea had been among the main pursuers but their away form was a real cause of concern. This was highlighted in a Super Sunday trip to Goodison Park to take on a struggling Everton side. Although Tore Andre Flo gave Chelsea the lead, that advantage was cancelled out just two minutes later by skipper Gary Speed. Duncan Ferguson and a Michael Duberry own goal completed a positive afternoon for Howard Kendall’s side. It would turn out to be Speed’s final match in Everton colours. He was sold to Newcastle United weeks later.

The Magpies’ were welcoming back their own star asset. Alan Shearer had sustained a serious knee injury in a pre-season tournament at Goodison Park in late July. He came back as a second-half substitute in the home fixture with Bolton Wanderers. Typically, Shearer had a role to play in the winning goal which was scored by Temuri Ketsbaia. The Georgian then lost control of his emotions, ripping his shirt off, before repeating kicking an advertising hoarding. It was a strange reaction but the 2-1 win was a vital result for Newcastle.

After a searing start of their own, Blackburn Rovers’ momentum had been checked in recent weeks and they managed just one win in January 1998. However, it was a great performance to trounce Aston Villa 5-0 at Ewood Park. It meant they defeated Villa by an aggregate score of 9-0 over the two matches they played against each other.

There was a bad-tempered match between Coventry City and Arsenal at Highfield Road. The Sky Blues’ were in excellent form and Gordon Strachan was about to win a Manager of the Month award for his achievements. They had beaten Manchester United a month earlier and held Arsenal up in a 2-2 draw. Both Patrick Vieira and Paul Williams saw red. Dion Dublin’s penalty ensured a share of the spoils against a tired Arsenal side that had gone to penalties earlier that week to overcome plucky Port Vale in the FA Cup.

North London rivals Tottenham Hotspur were also involved in a tempestuous game that weekend. Jurgen Klinsmann’s first goal since returning to the club was overshadowed by a red card for West Ham’s Samassi Abou. Abou proceeded to manhandle referee David Elleray and he had to be helped from the field by manager Harry Redknapp. Tottenham’s Colin Calderwood decided to get involved in the confrontation which saw the pair nearly come to blows. For the record, Tottenham won 1-0.

There was one match extra on this weekend and a third clash in little over a month between Liverpool FC and Newcastle United. Michael Owen scored the only goal in Liverpool’s 1-0 victory to complete a hat-trick of wins for the Reds’ over Dalglish’s Toon Army. This game had initially been scheduled for 31 August 1997 but was postponed as a mark of respect following the death of Princess Diana in a car accident in Paris.

What else happened in January 1998?

  • US president Bill Clinton’s integrity is called into question as reports emerge of his alleged affair with White House intern Monica Lewinsky. Later in the month in a live statement to the American nation, Clinton makes the famous vow: “I want to say one thing to the American people; I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Miss Lewinsky.”
  • A life imprisonment is handed down to Ramzi Yousef for his role in the first bombing of the World Trade Centre in 1993.
  • Manchester United footballer David Beckham and Spice Girl Victoria Adams (Posh Spice) announce their engagement.
  • France’s new national sports stadium, the Stade de France in Paris is officially opened ahead of that summer’s World Cup.
  • Titanic, Dame Judi Dench and Peter Fonda are among the winners at the 55th Golden Globes.
  • The Denver Broncos beat the Green Bay Packers 31-24 to win Super Bowl XXXII.
  • Hayley Patterson, British soap’s first transgender character, is first seen in Coronation Street.