- Tadic scores twice to be the hero
- Southampton grab just their second win in last 22 games
- Saints one point from safety with three games to go
Dusan Tadic was the hero as Southampton beat Bournemouth 2-1 at St Mary’s on Saturday in a huge win for Saints.
Tadic put Saints ahead but Josh King equalized for Bournemouth right on half time, but Tadic then won the game with a magical strike as Saints couldn’t finish Bournemouth off and had Alex McCarthy to thank for a stunning save late on.
With the win (their first at home since November and Mark Hughes’ first PL win in charge) Saints momentarily moved just one point behind Swansea who sit one place above them just out of the relegation zone. The Saints have 33 points, while Bournemouth have 38 points.
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Southampton went ahead with a rapid counter attack as Mario Lemina broke, then fed Tadic to slot home as St Mary’s erupted. 1-0 to Saints.
The home side then took the game by the scuff of the neck.
Lemina’s rasping drive from distance was then tipped wide by Asmir Begovic and moments later Charlie Austin went down in the box under a challenge from Begovic but no penalty kick was given.
Nathan Ake then had a great chance to equalize for Bournemouth as he turned in the box but Alex McCarthy stopped well down low with his left leg.
Right on half time Bournemouth equalized as a corner from the right was flicked to the back post and King hooked home to stun St Mary’s. 1-1.
After the break Bournemouth did plenty of pressing as Lewis Cook‘s long-range effort was pushed away from McCarthy, but then Saints broke again in devastating fashion and regained the lead.
Tadic picked up the ball 40 yards out, ran towards goals and sent a powerful toe punt towards the far corner which flew past Begovic to make it 2-1.
Saints almost made it 3-1 when Tadic’s shot deflected off Austin and went goalwards but Begovic made a smart reaction stop, then Tadic played in Ryan Bertrand but his weak attempt was saved by Begovic and Austin then smashed into the side-netting.
The chances kept coming for Saints as Shane Long and Lemina combined but Bournemouth’s defense scrambled to clear the danger.
Late on Bournemouth pushed hard for an equalizer as substitute Jermain Defoe was denied by Maya Yoshida and then Wesley Hoedt made a great last-ditch tackle.
And then McCarthy came up big with a wonderful save in stoppage time from Ryan Fraser‘s deflected shot as Saints held on for a huge win.
Southampton believe their great escape is well and truly on as they have dragged plenty of other teams into the relegation scrap.