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Southampton ended their drought as they secured a 1-0 victory over West Bromwich Albion, owing to a stellar goal from Sofiane Boufal. The game was looking like a damp squib, heading towards a goalless draw. However, in came Boufal as a substitute and he made an amazing run through the West Brom defence before curling an effort into the bottom corner.
The result will certainly lift the veil of tension at St. Mary’s Stadium and instead amp up the pressure on the Baggies and Tony Pulis, who are without a win in seven matches.
Let’s take a look at how the Southampton players fared against West Brom:
The goalkeeper was his usual solid self and denied a couple of efforts from West Brom in the first-half quite effectively.
Soares seems to have improved a bit – in terms of work rate – when compared to his performances so far. He did try hard but none of his efforts ultimately materialised.
The central defender continues to be a solid presence for Southampton at the back, and he did enough to keep West Brom at bay – especially Rondon.
The player equally contributed to both attack and defence but he looked a little tired and out of focus at times. A decent performance, nevertheless. The Baggies allowed him a lot of space and the player did try to capitalise.
Bertrand patrolled his area with solidity and ensured that the possession stayed with the Saints, especially during the last few minutes of the game.
Lemina continues to be vital for Southampton. He relentlessly contributed to attacking runs, and even though West Brom sometimes pressurised him, Lemina did not break and fought back.
He did contribute when it came to neutralising the West Brom attack but the player did not make a strong impact while going forward, following which he was substituted in the second-half.
The captain was always on the lookout for creating chances, and supplemented his teammates quite well with opportunities throughout the match. He was involved a lot and connected the midfield and the attack.
Tadic tried hard to get his name on the scoresheet but unfortunately, it was not his night. One of his efforts got denied, and he did not add as much power to the attack. He was rightfully substituted for Boufal with about 9 minutes left on the clock.
Long proved to be ineffective in front of the goal. He had his chances but he either missed them or his efforts flew straight into the hands of Forster.
Gabbiadini worked extremely well with his teammates but unfortunately lacked the power to see the ball sail through the net in this match – which does come as a surprise, considering his fiery performance against Newcastle only last week. However, if not for the resilient West Brom defence, the striker would have probably continued scoring.
Redmond was quite effective and played a major role in denying West Brom possession towards the end of the game.
The man of the night, Boufal came in and added a nice burst of energy in an otherwise humdrum game. He also scored the only goal of the match which secured three precious points for the Saints.
Replaced Shane Long in the 81st minute.