Southampton beat Everton 2-0 at St Mary’s to cement their place in the top 10 and plunge Frank Lampard’s side into a full-on relegation scrap.
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Stuart Armstrong scored early in the second half and Shane Long scored late on to seal the win, as Jordan Pickford stood on his head to make sure the defeat wasn’t a heavier one for Everton.
Ralph Hasenhuttl’s Southampton are now five games unbeaten in the Premier League and have lost just one of their last 11 in all competitions. They have 32 points after 25 games.
Lampard has now lost two of his first three PL games in charge of Everton as the Toffees have 22 points from 23 games and sit just four points above the bottom three.
Southampton vs Everton final score, stats
Southampton 2-0 Everton
Goals scored: Stuart Armstrong 52′, Long 84′
Shots: Southampton 19, Everton 9
Shots on target: Southampton 11, Everton 0
Possession: Southampton 57, Everton 43
Three things we learned from Southampton vs Everton
1. Saints’ high-line is risky, but works: Calvert-Lewin thought he had given Everton the lead early in the second half but Saints’ high-line worked very well once again from set pieces. They take a big risk because all it takes is for one man to get his timing wrong, but Saints are so well-drilled on set pieces defensively and they charge out together. That left three Everton players offside and moments later Saints took the lead. It is all about the small margins for Hasenhuttl and his coaching staff.
2. Injury-hit Everton not up for the fight: Yes, they were missing plenty of big players, but the likes of Calvert-Lewin, Michael Keane, Donny van de Beek and Richarlison weren’t at it away at Southampton. That does not bode well for Lampard. They were totally overrun in midfield and only Allan, who was booked early on and had to be taken off at half time before he was sent off, showed any real fight. His replacement Andre Gomes was caught in possession before Saints’ first goal and that summed Everton up. They have to get up for this relegation fight because they are in the thick of it at the bottom of the table and their star names don’t seem to want to admit it.
3. Broja, Adams a handful: Neither striker for Southampton but my word did they cause Everton problems. As a duo they work well together because they are so similar. Both like to run in-behind and both are powerful runners who are good in the air and able to hold the ball up. Saints stumbled on this combination up top and it has given them a brand new dimension as they can pin teams in and press high up the pitch.
Man of the Match: Jordan Pickford – If it wasn’t for their brilliant goalkeeper Everton would have lost by four or five. Kyle Walker-Peters was outstanding at left back for Saints.
Pickford stands tall
Everton started really well as Anthony Gordon looked lively down the left and Oriol Romeu then saw the ball hit his arm in the box but nothing was given after a VAR check.
At the other end Armando Broja was set free but Jordan Pickford saved well with his legs. James Ward-Prowse saw his free kick pushed away by Pickford, as Allan was booked earlier and gave away the free kick too.
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Saints should have taken the lead but somehow Tino Livramento couldn’t finish from a corner as Pickford saved from close range. Bednarek hit the crossbar with a header but he was offside as the home side clicked through the gears. Walker-Peters then clipped the post after a fine run into the box.
Saints surge to victory
In the second Everton (who brought on Andre Gomes at half time for Allan) tried to get on the front-foot.
Calvert-Lewin had the ball in the back of the net but he was clearly offside, then Saints took the lead with their first effort of the second half.
After Saints won the ball back from Andre Gomes, Romeu found Adams on the edge of the box and he teed up Stuart Armstrong who curled home a calm finish to send St Mary’s wild.
Adams should have made it 2-0 but he didn’t get enough on his effort from close range and it was saved by Pickford. Armstrong then curled one just over as the home side were rampant. Walker-Peters’ deflected effort was saved by Pickford, and he had another shot well-saved by the Everton goalkeeper.
Broja dragged a shot wide of the far post as Southampton kept flooding forward, and then Shane Long headed home to make it 2-0 and seal a deserved win.