Southampton 3-1 Liverpool Match Report

16 Mar

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Reds Stunned By Saints

Liverpool were looking for their 5th win in a row in all competitions for the first time in more than 3 years, but were shocked by an impressive Southampton side who could have won by more than the 3-1 score line.

The hosts took the lead as early as the 5th minute when Schneiderlin knocked in a Rodriguez knock down from close range. Southampton continued to press and they doubled their lead in the 32nd minute when a Lambert free-kick deflected off Liverpool’s defensive wall fooling the deputising Jones in goal.

Liverpool undeservedly managed to keep themselves in the match with a Coutinho goal on the stroke of half-time. But as the game became stretched in the second half with both teams creating chances it was Southampton who got the killer third goal 10 minutes before the end when Jay Rodriguez dribbled his way into the Liverpool penalty box before beating Jones at the second attempt.

The Team

Reina and Carragher were unavailable for selection through injury, so Jones and Skrtel deputised as Brendan Rodgers had to shuffle his pack for the visit to the south coast, and he also decided to start Joe Allen instead of Lucas. But the interesting team news was of a place on the bench for the 17 year old Jordan Ibe. The team read Jones, Johnson, Enrique, Skrtel, Agger, Coutinho, Allen, Gerrard, Downing, Sturridge and Suarez.

The Match

Southampton started the match intent on knocking Liverpool out of their passing game and they got the ideal start in the 5th minute when Schneiderlin put the hosts ahead from close range from a Rodriguez knock-down.

Southampton should have doubled their lead moments later when Lambert was clean through with just Jones to beat but the deputising keeper managed to block the striker’s effort.

The home side were on the ascendency as Liverpool struggled to gain any meaningful possession. Ramirez called Brad Jones into more action with a couple of efforts as Southampton looked for a killer 3rd goal.

Next Rodriguez blazed over the bar from close range with the goal gaping as the Liverpool’s defence looked vulnerable. Then Enrique made a good defensive header under pressure at the back post as Southampton continued to threaten the visitor’s goal.

But in a rare Liverpool attack Suarez looked to be running through on goal but was stopped by a strange decision by the referee’s assistant after Hooiveld fell over.

Southampton doubled their lead just after the half hour mark when a Rickie Lambert free-kick deflected off Liverpool’s defensive wall and past Brad Jones.

Liverpool responded with Sturridge getting into a dangerous position down the right but the Southampton defence managed to clear his low cross.

Next it was the impressive Rodriguez he went very close with an effort just missing the post. A minute later Coutinho was put clear one on one with Boruc but he was blocked by the big keeper.

But the little Brazilian gave Liverpool hope with a goal after finishing off a goal mouth scramble after Sturridge had a shot blocked just before half-time.

Brendan Rodgers replaced Joe Allen with Lucas for the start of the second half in the hope of stemming the flow of Southampton attacks.

The second half started in a more cagey fashion with not many chances for either side, Suarez continued to look a frustrated figure after a clever pass from Lucas just ran away from the Uruguayan and into Boruc’s arms.

Suarez then had an effort from a free-kick comfortably saved by Boruc as Liverpool looked for an equaliser. But the hosts continued to look dangerous on attack as Johnson and Skrtel combined to clear a teasing cross by Clyne.

Next it was Sturridge firing in a cross-shot but Boruc collected once again. Then Lallana should have made it 3-1 but lobbed effort lacked power and allowed Skrtel to clear.

But Southampton were not to be denied when the dangerous Rodriguez dribbled a long way evading several challenges in the process before beating Jones at the second attempt to kill off any hopes of a Liverpool comeback.

Suarez ended a disappointing day with a booking late on to sum up Liverpool’s day.

Summary

When I saw Reina, Carragher and more disappointingly Lucas were not starting I feared the worst for Liverpool and I’m sorry to say my fears were realised. The match was like a carbon-copy of the Stoke match back in December when they got about Liverpool from the start and Liverpool failed to cope with the type of battling style posed.

How could Joe Allen start in place of Lucas when Allen needs an operation on his shoulder. Worse still was Allen’s poor performance in midfield as he constantly gave the ball away and was muscled out of challenges in midfield. Thankfully Rodgers saw the error of his ways and replaced the Welshman for Lucas at half-time. Carragher was sorely missed in defence too with Martin Skrtel looking all over the place at times and the defence lacking an organisational voice in Carragher’s absence.

But in fairness Southampton played brilliantly and should have been 3 or 4 goals up at half-time, but I thought Coutinho’s goal would have brought an improved attitude to Liverpool’s play in the second half, but there was a distinct lack of ambition, tempo and heart shown, which was very disappointing and Southampton deservedly killed off Liverpool’s hopes with a third goal.

The season just continues in a frustrating pattern with bad performances after good, and Brendan Rodgers has to rectify this if Liverpool are to qualify for Europe.

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One Response to “Southampton 3-1 Liverpool Match Report”

  1. Omensa March 16, 2013 at 7:24 pm #

    Hi mate, this time i blame rodgers 100% irrespective of carra and lucas nocks! Mate, ve u realise that rodgers has entirely abandon his so call tikitaka? He’s experimented since hence. I dont bide by rodgers’ arrogance and 2 certain extent bias. He’s abbrogated the 3p’s possession presssing and penitration since he realise his approach has been mischieve.fortunately his middle 3 of either Lucas or Allen, Henderson and Gerrard were flourishing but he decide 2 experiment with new approach of 2 3 1 without the energetic and atheletic henderson assisting but refuse 2 accomodate hendo why? Am not too surprise what happen bcos any tactical and in dept tactician of modern manager will bcome paramount over rodgers.

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