Everton beat Southampton 1-0 at Goodison Park on Saturday as the Toffees won their third-straight Premier League match and shutout a lackluster Saints outfit.
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Phil Jagielka scored the only goal of the game in the 16th minute, as he tapped home and Everton held onto that lead despite barely threatening Southampton’s goal for the rest of the game. The closest the visitors came was Graziano Pelle’s effort early on which saw Tim Howard pull off a wonder stop.
With the win the Toffees climb to 11th and now have 37 points, while Saints missed the chance to jump up to fifth and stay in sixth spot on 53 points.
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Southampton piled on plenty of pressure early on and U.S. national team goalkeeper Howard pulled off a stunning save to deny Pelle as the 36-year-old American somehow clawed the ball out of the top corner. Remarkable.
Moments later Everton were ahead as a corner saw a melee in the box and Jagielka cleaned up from close range. 1-0 to Everton.
James Ward-Prowse then flashed a curling free kick inches wide for Saints as Ronald Koeman’s men responded well to going being and then Howard was called into action once again before half time to deny Ward-Prowse’s deflected effort from distance.
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In the second half Saints kept the ball well and tried to put Everton under pressure but they just couldn’t find the killer ball in the final third despite bringing on both Dusan Tadic and Sadio Mane for the final 30 minutes.
Saints smashes plenty of long balls into the box in the second half but Everton’s defense easily dealt with the threat of Pelle and Co. as Martinez’s men continued their climb up the table.
Everton: Howard, Baines, Jagielka, Stones, Coleman, Barry, McCarthy, Osman, Barkley (Besic, 71′), Lennon, Kone (Naismith, 70′)
Goal: Jagielka (16′)
Southampton: Davis, Bertrand, Fonte, Alderweireld (Djuricic, 82′), Clyne, Schneiderlin, Wanyama, Ward-Prowse (Mane, 61′), Elia (Tadic, 61′), Long, Pelle