Southampton 1-2 West Brom: Baggies beat sorry Saints

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  • Long gave Saints lead
  • Phillips, Robson-Kanu strike
  • Van Dijk shown red card late on

West Bromwich Albion came from behind to beat Southampton 2-1 at St Mary’s on New Year’s Eve.

Shane Long had put the home side ahead but just over a minute later Matt Phillips equalized as the first half finished frantically. At the start of the second half Hal Robson-Kanu scored a screamer to make it 2-1 and that’s how it finish.

Saints finished the game with 10-men after Virgil Van Dijk was given a second yellow card with Claude Puel‘s side losing two games in a row over the festive period to stay on 24 points, while West Brom move above them in the table as they have 26 points.

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Saints dominated early proceedings and Sofiane Boufal flashed an effort across goal which just went wide of the far post with no forwards attacking the area.

A set piece situation soon after saw the ball fall to Sam McQueen and the local lad dragged an effort inches wide.

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Four minutes before half time the opening goal arrived as Dusan Tadic‘s corner was headed home by Long for his first goal of the season for Southampton in his 22nd appearance. 1-0 to Saints.

Just two minutes later it was 1-1 as Phillips was found in the box and he slotted home a low effort into to corner. Saints almost went back in front before the break but Ben Foster denied two efforts from close range.

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Five minutes into the second half West Brom went ahead in stunning fashion. Phillips played in Robson-Kanu and he was forced wide on the angle by Van Dijk but the Welsh international rifled a shot into the top corner from a seemingly impossible angle to put his side ahead.

2-1 to the Baggies who turned the game on its head.

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Boufal curled a shot just wide as Saints looked to get level and then Jay Rodriguez was brought on to try and force the issue.

James Morrison‘s header was then well-saved by Fraser Forster, but at the other end Saints huffed and puffed and never really looked like equalizing.

To make matters worse Van Dijk was shown a second yellow card for a tackle on Salomon Rondon late on, as Southampton finished the game with 10-men.

That summed up a miserable festive period for the Saints.

Transfer Rumor Roundup: Chelsea still pursuing Roma duo, and more

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Chelsea is looking to make a big transfer splash as it searches for potential replacements for Michy Batshuayi and David Luiz.

According to multiple reports, Chelsea is attempting a double signing from AS Roma, forward Edin Dzeko and midfielder Emerson Palmieri. The Brazilian left-back is rated by Roma at $30.5 million but he could join Chelsea on loan. However the interest in Dzeko is much newer, and it’s unclear whether Roma would allow Dzeko to leave, especially in the middle of the season.

[READ: MLS SuperDraft 2018 Live Tracker]

With Roma preparing to face Inter Milan this weekend, talks between the two clubs have been put on hold until next week.

Dzeko’s agent confirmed that Conte is interested in the Bosnia and Herzegovina international but stated Dzeko’s desire is to remain at Roma.

After failing to beat out Sergio Aguero in the starting lineup for Manchester City, it would be interesting to see Dzeko give the Premier League another go, although he’d likely play second-fiddle again, this time to Alvaro Morata.

Here are some more transfer rumors from around Europe and the Premier League:


MLS SuperDraft 2018 Live Tracker

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For a few dozen players, hearing their name called up to the big stage will validate all the hard work and sacrifices they’ve made since they were children.

Starting at 11:00 a.m. when Los Angeles FC is on the clock at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia, the 2018 MLS SuperDraft will be underway. Many of the top college prospects will soon find out whether they’ll be headed to the Pacific Northwest, New England, the Southeast, Southern California or anywhere in between.

[MORE: 2018 MLS Mock Draft]

This year’s draft class is loaded with attacking talent, from Generation Adidas trio Ema Twumasi (Wake Forest), Mason Toye (Indiana) and Francis Atuahene (Michigan) to Twumasi’s college teammate Jon Bakero.

But potential No. 1 overall pick is a three-time national champion, Thomas Hilliard-Arce, who could become the anchor of a backline for a decade.

Follow along below as we update the picks live as we hear them:


Bayern signs Germany midfielder Goretzka from rival Schalke

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MUNICH (AP) Bayern Munich signed Germany midfielder Leon Goretzka on Friday on a free transfer from Bundesliga rival Schalke effective from next season.

Bayern said the 22-year-old Goretzka signed a four-year deal from July 1 through June 2022.

Schalke, which Goretzka joined in 2013 from hometown club Bochum, said the player informed the club this week of his wish to join Bayern when his contract expired.

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“We think we did everything in the last months to convince Leon to stay with us,” Schalke sporting director Christian Heidel said. “In the end, it wasn’t enough.”

Schalke had long been engaged in trying to get Goretzka to extend his contract, but was aware of reported interest from Bayern, Real Madrid, Barcelona, Juventus and Liverpool.

“We’re very happy that Leon Goretzka, a German international with big potential, has decided in favor of Bayern despite big-name international competitors. This way it’s ensured that Leon Goretzka remains in the Bundesliga,” Bayern chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge said.

Goretzka scored 19 goals and set up 13 more in 130 appearances for Schalke.

The club had previously expressed its displeasure with Bayern making public statements about its player after Goretzka was praised by sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic and coach Jupp Heynckes.

Heidel said “we don’t need to hear every day from the Munich people how good our player is.”

Goretzka has six goals in 12 games for Germany.

Pele hospitalized overnight in Brazil

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The most famous soccer player in the world had a scare last night as he was hospitalized in Brazil for “severe exhaustion.”

Pele, 77, was set to travel to London this weekend to be honored by the Football Writers Association, though it looks like that trip has now been postponed.

In the early hours of Thursday morning, Pele collapsed and was taken to a hospital in Brazil where he has undergone a series of tests which appear to point to severe exhaustion,” a FWA statement said. “He remains on fluids while doctors monitor his recovery.

“Thankfully, there is no suggestion of anything more serious than exhaustion.”

Here’s to hoping Pele makes a full recovery.

[MORE: USMNT centerback heads to Championship club]