FACup Cup R4 Replay

St.Mary's - 7.45 pm

Southampton 3

  • Mara 52', 58'
  • Adams 76'

Watford 0


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On a very wet evening Sekou Mara scoring his and Saints first goal of a comprehensive win


Match Report

IBO Reporter: channonite


|The first thing to say about this comprehensive win is that it was a match in wet conditions. Very wet indeed. The journey home across Salisbury Plain was not the easiest in the torrential rain but made easier by the warm glow of a great win and some outstanding performances from some of the youngsters.

This is another abbreviated match report, as time is against me, and we have another match on Saturday. The side was, as expected, much changed, with Lumley in goal, a back four of Charles, Stephens, Bednarek, and the young left-back Meghoma. Midfield was Smallbone, Downes, and Rothwell, with a front three of Dibling, Adams, and Mara—a good mix of experience and youth.

I have started buying match programmes again, having given up at least three seasons ago; now I am buying them again, what with Saints winning and playing sides I have lost track of. The programme for this match was a slim affair, but it was matched by a slim price of £2, so that was welcome. The cover was based on those from 1976/77, so the whole feel of it reminded me of that post-FACup winning season.

It soon became apparent that all the changes had made the side look disjointed. Although Smallbone and Dibling looked impressive, everybody seemed to be trying too hard to make things happen.

Gradually, Watford began to make things happen, and ex-Saint Wesley Hoedt was involved in much of it.

The first real chance came Watford's way when they had a shot deflected high up in the air, and it came down and clipped the cross-bar before going behind.

Later in the half, the Saints had a real chance when Mara played a perfect pass to Adams right in front of the goal, but somehow, he hit the ball straight at the keeper.

The game seemed to slow to almost a walking pace, as the team had clearly run out of ideas of how to break Watford down. Thankfully, half-time came, and it was still goalless with all to play for.

I don't know what the halt-time talk was about, but it worked. Even as the rain continued lashing down, they looked sharper. Rothwell surged forward on the left, finding Adams on the edge of the Watford area. He, in turn, gave the ball the lightest of touches, and there was Mara, steaming in to hammer the ball in beyond the keeper. 1-0.

We didn't have to wait long for number two. Saints were a joy to watch now. From defending a Watford attack, the ball was calmly played out and picked up by Dibling deep in his half. He proceeded to run and run and run. He refused to be knocked off the ball and brushed off the tackles. Finally, he played it forward to Adams, who instantly flicked it across to Mara. The Frenchman stopped, steadied the ball and from all of 25 yards, unleashed a piledriver of a shot, which flew into the back of the net, giving the keeper no chance. 2-0. Wonderful.

And still, the rain came down,

Next came the moment that incensed everyone in the stadium: Edozie was racing down the left wing when the No.3, Sierralta, deliberately shoulder-charged the youngster. He couldn't have complained if he had been given a straight red card for that, but he only got a yellow.

From the resulting free kick, Rothwell sent in a perfect ball, which Ché Adams, on a diagonal run, just flicked into the net. It was a move straight off the training ground. 3-0. Seventy-six minutes gone, and that was that.

Except that Saints were ripping Watford to bits now. First, Mara had a good chance that went agonisingly wide; then Edozie managed to hit the upright.

Even that wasn't the end of Saints' chances. Young Sam Amo-Ameyaw joined the party, hitting the upright when clean through. Shortly after, he hit the side netting before the ref blew for full-time to put Watford out of their misery.

My favourite moment came when the crowd started singing to ex-Saint Wesley Hoedt: "Wesley, Wesley, what's the score? "

Then we had to splash our way back to the car and head off across a sodden Salisbury Plain to go home.


Man of the Match


Simply all of them, but if I had to pick one, it would be Sekou Mara. The boy is coming good at last.


Teams



Southampton


  • 13 Lumley
  • 24 Charles
  • 5 Stephens
  • 35 Bednarek
  • 29 Meghoma
  • 16 Smallbone - Booked 21' (Bragg 87')
  • 4 Downes (S Armstrong 78')
  • 19 Rothwell (A Armstrong 77' - Booked 87')
  • 33 Dibling - Booked 51' (Edozie 65' - Booked 86')
  • 10 Adams (Amo-Ameyaw 78')
  • 18 Mara

Substitutes

  • 1 McCarthy
  • 2 Walker-Peters
  • 3 Manning
  • 9 A Armstrong
  • 17 S Armstrong
  • 21 Harwood-Bellis
  • 23 Edozie
  • 27 Amo-Ameyaw
  • 40 Bragg

Watford


  • 1 Bachmann (Hamer 60')
  • 24 Dele-Bashiru
  • 5 Porteous - Booked 69'
  • 4 Hoedt
  • 42 Morris - Booked 46' (Lewis 53')
  • 3 Sierralta - Booked 75'
  • 37 Martins
  • 11 Koné (Ince 90'+1)
  • 16 Chakvetadze - Booked 49' (Andrews 54')
  • 12 Sema (Asprilla 53')
  • 9 Rajovic (Bayo 69')

Substitutes

  • 6 Lewis
  • 7 Ince
  • 8 Livermore
  • 15 Pollock
  • 18 Asprilla
  • 19 Bayo
  • 26 Hamer
  • 45 Andrews
  • 61 Nabizada


Match Stats


  • Southampton/Watford
  • Possession: 59%/41%
  • Shots: 13/5
  • Shots on Target: 6/1
  • Corners: 6/4
  • Fouls: 13/7

Officials/Attendance


  • Referee: Darren Bond
  • Assistant referees: Timothy Wood & Bhupinder Singh Gill
  • Fourth official: Gavin Ward
  • Attendance: 17,844

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