Southampton 3 – 1 Liverpool

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    By AmericanKopite, 16-03-2013, 17:58:22

    England manager Roy Hodgson was in the stands for this clash at St. Mary’s Stadium; a place where Liverpool have not won in over 10 years. Southampton coming off their two game skid were looking for a much needed win against Liverpool FC who haven’t won five consecutive games in over three years. Phil Dowd was the man with the cards as the match kicked off.

    A massive start was in the cards and Southampton capitalized; it was the French midfielder Morgan Schneiderlin who took a deflected shot and calmly slotted it around the left side of keeper Brad Jones just three yards away to make the score a shocking 1-nil just five minutes in. Certainly a shock start for everyone involved.

    Liverpool looked to pick up the pace and desire, but Southampton did not let up on the pressure even 20 minutes into the match. It should have been two-nil in the 21st minute when a deflected shot was parried by Brad Jones and fell to the eager feet of Jay Rodriguez, but the feet were too eager as the shot sailed over the crossbar. Liverpool were struggling incredibly hard to maintain possession and the multiple clearances out of their own box were showing that.

    An early substitution appeared for the home side when Jose Fonte came on for the previously injured Jos Hooiveld.

    A well placed free kick was awarded for the Saints just 20 yards out, and Ricky Lambert was the right man for the job. His kick split the right side of the wall and took a fortunate bounce which put the ball just out of Brad Jones’ reach and slipped into the lower right corner of the goal, mirroring the goal before it. 2-nil was now the shock scoreline for Southampton, and Liverpool found themselves in dire times just 32 minutes into the match.

    Redemption for the reds just before the stroke of halftime when a myriad of shots fell to Southampton’s Arthur Boruc, ending with a shot by new boy Phillipe Coutinho that shook the back of the net and made the scoreline a much more relieving sight of 2-1 for the away fans. Mercifully afterwards, the whistle went to signal the end of the half.

    The second half was underway with one minor change to the Liverpool side with Joe Allen now on the bench for his midfielding counterpart, Lucas Leiva.

    The second sub of the match came just after an unsuccessful Liverpool corner when Gaston Ramirez was replaced by Steven Davis to close out the 55th minute.

    It was an uneventful rest of the second half until Jay Rodriguez decided to make his mark on this one in the 79th minute. An incredible run around Lucas Leiva and Martin Skrtel saw Rodriguez one on one with keeper Brad Jones, and Jones was never in this fight. A clinical finish by Rodriguez put the score 3-1 for the home side now.

    Two more subs came a minute later when Jordan Henderson was on for Daniel Sturridge and Southampton’s Guly’ do Prado came on for Adam Lallana.

    Frustration set in for the reds, most notably Luis Suarez who was booked for a minor tangle with keeper Arthur Boruc in the dying minutes of the match.

    That would be the last headline, though, as the whistle sounded after three minutes of stoppage time.

    Southampton FC beating the 18 time league champions makes them yet another team on the list of this year’s giant killers, ending the impressive run Liverpool built up until now.

    It was a much needed three points for The Saints as their relegation battle continues with just eight games left in the season. Their next match is the 30th of March at home against European champions, Chelsea FC, who are in their own fight to finish in the top four.

    An incredibly disappointing finish for The Reds after two exciting wins, but the reds have time to rest and recuperate before their trip to Villa Park on the 31st as they are also in the hunt to finish for a European spot.

    Until then,
    –AK

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