Southampton 2-3 Manchester United: Dream double for Martial on full debut

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  • Graziano Pelle opened the scoring inside 15 minutes off a rebound
  • Anthony Martial pulled it back level after the half-hour mark
  • Martial got a second for the lead and Juan Mata finished it off

Mocked, jibed, and ridiculed, 19-year-old Anthony Martial is not only silencing the doubters in record pace, he’s sending them scampering home tails between their legs.

Martial scored a brace on his full debut – his second and third goals for Manchester United in just 115 minutes – and Juan Mata capped it off as Manchester United came back from a goal down to beat Southampton 3-2 at St Mary’s.

Southampton looked the team with more intent off the start, and after the first 10 minutes they had their first real opportunity off a cross from Tadic just out of reach of Graziano Pelle.

It would come just moments for Pelle later however, and Manchester United would go 1-0 down. The ball came to James Ward-Prowse on the right, and his first-time cross found Sadio Mane all alone in the box. His point-blank shot came crashing off David De Gea, but the rebound came to Pelle who easily touched home for the opener.

[ RELATED: Watch full match replays ]

Manchester United controlled much of the possession, but Southampton continued to be dangerous as Pelle hit the post moments later after being played in by Oriol Romeu.

Finally, as the game dragged on, Manchester United would find an equalizer on 34 minutes. A header forward fell to Juan Mata, and Maya Yoshida dispossessed him in the box on a clean tackle. With every United player and fan screaming for a penalty, Yoshida’s tackle poked the ball right to an unmarked Anthony Martial, who struck the ball home for his second goal in two games for the Red Devils.

Martial would get a second just after halftime as he sliced through the Southampton defense and snatched a terrible backpass from Yoshida, finishing cooly past Maarten Stekelenburg for the lead.

[ MORE: Click here for full lineups, stats, box score ]

With the lead, it was De Gea’s turn to star. A free header in the box from Jose Fonte on the hour mark was surely goal bound, but the Spaniard went full-stretch to brilliantly save the point-blank effort.

Finally, the visitors put the game away with a third on 68 minutes. Memphis Depay completed a stunning turn in the box with the outside of his foot, and while his shot clanged the post, the rebound fell to Juan Mata who slammed the ball into the open net.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

The Saints made things interesting with a goal in the final five minutes, as Mane found Pelle for an open header in the box which the Italian buried, but it was too little too late. De Gea needed a pair of fantastic saves in added time to keep it that way as Wanyama ripped a curler from distance and saw the Spaniard go full stretch to keep him out.

The win for Manchester United – their third of the season and second straight – put the Red Devils second in the league table, leaping over West Ham who won earlier today. Southampton, meanwhile, suffered their first loss in a month and remain on just six points, in the bottom third of the table.

Josef Martinez scores 2 more in win, including sensational solo work

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Josef Martinez scored his 25th and 26th goals of the MLS season, and if he challenges his MLS record of 31, he may also stare down soccer royalty.

The Venezuelan striker scored two more on Wednesday in a 2-0 defeat of FC Cincinnati in Ohio to give him goals in 15-straight league contests.

He now has 76 goals in 80 MLS games, which is good.

[ MORE: Champions League wrap ]

On the season, he’s six goals shy of matching the Major League Soccer record he set with last season’s 31 regular season goals.

According to MLSSoccer.com, he’s six games shy of tying Lionel Messi’s world record for consecutive league matches with a goal.

Even that’s a little tricky: Messi scored in 21-straight games in which he was eligible for selection, but 19-straight before missing two matches for injury. In that remarkable run of 21, he also had a run of six-straight braces.

It’s not really worth it to attempt to compare the two streaks: If Martinez gets to 21 (or even 19), it’s amazing stuff and worth celebrating on a worldwide level. Everyone has a bad game every now and again, but Martinez still finds the score sheet in ’em.

Look at the magician’s tricks he used for this one, including a back heel first touch and two freeze-frame cut moves. That’s not even mentioning the finish.

USWNT announces final matches of World Cup-winning year

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CHICAGO (AP) The Women’s World Cup champion U.S. team will wrap up 2019 with matches against Sweden and Costa Rica.

U.S. Soccer announced Wednesday that the U.S. will face Sweden in Columbus, Ohio, on Nov. 7 and Costa Rica in Jacksonville, Florida, on Nov. 10.

[ MORE: Champions League wrap ]

The team is wrapping up its World Cup victory tour next month with matches against South Korea on Oct. 3 in Charlotte, North Carolina, and on Oct. 6 in Chicago.

Coach Jill Ellis is stepping down following the match in Chicago after leading the team to a pair of consecutive World Cup titles.

The United States is 15-1-2 this year and currently riding a 14-game winning streak.

More AP soccer: https://apnews.com/apf-Soccer and https://twitter.com/AP-Sports

Report: Mane to get big raise, Liverpool contract through 2025

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Liverpool’s Senegalese sensation looks set to stay at Anfield deep into his 30s.

Sadio Mane is in talks with the Reds hierarchy over a new deal that will run through 2024-25, and pay him more than $15 million per season.

[ MORE: Champions League wrap ]

Mane, 27, currently has a deal through 2023, but surely wouldn’t mind a raise. And Liverpool will be happy to tie him down on Merseyside a bit longer.

He’s scored six times in seven matches this season, also grabbing an assist. That’s on a better pace than his 26 goals and five assists over 50 appearances in 2018/19.

Mane has 70 Premier League goals at the moment. Do you tip him to eclipse 100 while still at Anfield? 125?

Europa League preview: Man Utd, Wolves, Arsenal begin group stage

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The Europa League begins its group stage on Thursday, with the three Premier League combatants taking on clubs from Kazakhstan, Portugal and Germany.

Manchester United’s kids are gonna get some playing time when Astana visits Old Trafford on Wednesday.

Teenager Mason Greenwood and 21-year-old Axel Tuanzebe will start, and Sergio Romero will be between the sticks.

[ MORE: Champions League wrap ]

And the Manchester Evening News notes that Tahith Chong and Angel Gomes could also start at Old Trafford, meaning the veterans in the fray will be quite important.

Enter Fred, the forgotten $68 million man from Shaktar Donetsk. The 23 minutes he played last week versus Leicester City account for his lone time on the pitch this season.

Here’s Ole Gunnar Solskjaer:

“I’m sure we’ll see more and more of Fred. We spoke about it earlier, he’s had some great games in midfield with Scott against PSG and Arsenal, for example, and we’re just waiting for that to flourish.”

Fred had an odd record under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer last season, barely in the squad when the team started hot but trusted against PSG and Barcelona in the Champions League.

Speaking of little-used midfielders, Arsenal boss Unai Emery is getting a little grief for leaving Mesut Ozil behind for the Gunners’ trip to Germany for a big match with Eintracht Frankfurt.

Ozil made his first start of the season in Arsenal’s 2-2 draw with Watford at the weekend, playing 71 minutes and departing with the club up 2-1.

So why not even bring him abroad? Rest.

“Because we are going to play another match on Sunday,” Emery said, via The London Evening Standard. “My decision is because he played and also I’m thinking tomorrow the focus and the first 11 and after that I decided who are the players who can be the best for tomorrow and also the players not and that is Sokratis and Mesut.”

Sokrastis Papastathopoulos is also out, having played a big role in the embarrassing performance at Watford.

There have been tough times for Wolves as well, who sit in the relegation zone after five matches of the Premier League season.

They’ve been quite good in Europa League, though, dispatching a pair of minnows before winning both legs against Serie A side Torino.

Why the inconsistency? It’s not fixture congestion, according to Ruben Neves:

“I don’t think fatigue has anything to do with it, Neves said, via The Birmingham Mail. “We’re all top players, we’re used to it, we’re used to playing a lot of games in quick succession. I don’t think the Europa League has (anything) to do with our position in the Premier League. Obviously, we haven’t had the start that we’ve wanted, but it’s been a beautiful journey into the Europa League. This is a historic moment for Wolves and we’re going to do our best in this competition.”

Nuno Espirito Santo‘s men are in Portugal to meet Braga, one of three tricky opponents in Besiktas and Slovan Bratislava.

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