Can Pardew Learn Lessons From Southampton?
Southampton v Newcastle Match Report
Southampton 4 Newcastle 0 Saturday 13 September 3pm
This reminded me a little bit of the Manchester United semi-final in Cardiff.
While an outsider may well have looked at this fixture and thought surely Newcastle had a fighting chance, I didn’t talk to a single fan pre-match who though United would get anything but well beaten.
It only took seconds to confirm our worst fears of what was to come, a lazy disinterested back pass from Coloccini left Krul struggling and Long was very unlucky to see his charging down of the clearance just go the wrong side of the post.
This only gave a brief respite as with six minutes gone, the defence was like cardboard cut-outs as Southampton played over and around them, with summer signing Pelle eventually heading home unchallenged. In the build-up this goal, Cabella was particularly embarrassing as he showed no interest or focus on following his man.
Nineteen minutes and the Saint were two up, though it could have been four or five by now.
Williamson produced the worst defensive header imaginable by heading it up in the air and straight to Pelle, his kick was skewed but went straight to Tadic who then played the ball back into the path of Pelle who walked it into the net. This was to the background of Krul and his central defenders all waving their arms in the air in the manner of very desperate men, with offside nowhere near being called.
A third goal was seemingly only minutes, or even second, away but surprisingly it was United who almost got it.
Southampton had a breather after seemingly sewing the game up early and Sissoko started and almost finished a move, arriving in the box late and steering Haidara’s very decent low cross goalwards, Fraser Forster making a great reflex save.
Colback then followed up with a low shot from the edge of the box that Forster dealt comfortably with.
That was really it as far as any threat from the visitors went and with nine minutes of the second half gone it was three, as Southampton decided to finish the match off for sure but United happy to lend a hand as well.
Williamson was caught on the back foot as the ball was diverted, his hesitancy and Krul left in no man’s land meant it was easy for Jack Cork to finish.
The only amazing stat was that it took until the last seconds for a fourth and what proved to be the best of the game.
Cabella and Sissoko’s international teammate Scheiderlin bending the ball into the top corner but assisted by Janmaat backing off and then presenting his back in a less than brave piece of defending.
To the full-back’s credit he was the only one showing real interest in coming over to the fans, though he embarrassed a few others and eventually they came halfway but still ten/twenty yards behind the Dutchman.
Tellingly, Coloccini escaped down the tunnel without seemingly a second thought.
The fact that he and Krul are looking so off the pace is possibly the worst aspect of any hope of a fightback from this group of players.
Team: Krul, Janmaat, Coloccini, Williamson, Haidara, Colback, Anita (Tiote 46), Sissoko (Sammy Ameobi 89), Gouffran, Cabella (Perez 69), Riviere
Unused Subs: Elliot, Obertan, Steven Taylor, Armstrong
Ref: Chris Foy
Crowd: 29,678 (2,474 Newcastle)
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