English Premier League 2021-22

Everton 3

  • Richarlison 47'
  • Abdoulaye Doucouré 76'
  • Dominic Calvert-Lewin 81'

Southampton 1

  • Adam Armstrong 22'
    Intro & Team News

    Intro and Team News

    IBO Reporter - channonite

    |So, the period leading up to the first match of the season is a time of wonderful optimism, whatever is going on in the transfer window. This year was no different and that feeling lasted right up until the line-up for the Everton game was released. Then it was a case for me of shouting "What The Actual Feck!" at my poor unsuspecting phone.

    I know the conventional wisdom is that Saints always are rubbish for the first match of the season, coupled with the fact that we haven't beaten Everton at Goodison Park for something like three hundred years. I just don't buy it, that's straightforward simple defeatism. Saints then did their level best to prove the old wives tails correct...

    The team then. McCarthy in goal. Good God why? An excellent right back in Kyle Walker-Peters dropped in favour if an 18 year old, playing his very first game for the club. Stephens paired with Salisu in the heart of defence, please tell me how this was right? At left back was a debutant that I couldn't argue with - Romain Perraud. Simply put, the only other alternatives were either Djenepo (A full back? Really?), or Livramento who was making his debut at right back.

    Turning to midfield, JWP was back and alongside him was Oriol Romeu. No arguments from me there. The wide two were Theo Walcott on the right (with Stuart Armstrong on the bench? Don't we want to win??) and Djenepo on the left.

    At the front was the obvious choice of Ché Adams and alongside him was the big surprise - Adam Armstrong. A surprise, as Ralph was saying in the lead up to the game that he would need a few days to learn the club's automatisms, or whatever he calls them.

    On the bench were Kyle Walker-Peters, Nathan Redmond, Stuart Armstrong, Nathan Tella, Mohamed Elyounoussi, Ibrahima Diallo, Jan Bednarek, Yan Valery and Fraser Forster. That is about as strong a bench as we have had for a long while, the trouble was that five, or six should actually have been starting.

    At least James Ward-Prowse is still with us and taking the knee remains as well


    • 1 Pickford
    • 23 Coleman
    • 4 Holgate
    • 5 Keane
    • 12 Digne
    • 6 Allan
    • 16 Doucouré - Booked 76'
    • 14 Townsend (Iwobi 70')
    • 11 Gray (Mina 83')
    • 7 Richarlison - Booked 30' (Gordon 89')
    • 9 Calvert-Lewin


    • 2 Kenny
    • 8 Delph
    • 13 Mina
    • 15 Begovic
    • 17 Iwobi
    • 24 Gordon
    • 26 Davies
    • 32 Branthwaite
    • 34 Broadhead

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    • 1 McCarthy
    • 21 Livramento
    • 5 Stephens
    • 22 Salisu
    • 15 Perraud (Redmond 83')
    • 32 Walcott (Tella 80')
    • 8 Ward-Prowse
    • 6 Romeu (Diallo 79')
    • 19 Djenepo
    • 10 Adams
    • 9 A Armstrong


    • 2 Walker-Peters
    • 11 Redmond
    • 17 S Armstrong
    • 23 Tella
    • 24 Elyounoussi
    • 27 Diallo
    • 35 Bednarek
    • 43 Valery
    • 44 Forster

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    Match Report

    Well, that's the way to announce yourself! Adam Armstrong took just 22 minutes to score his first ever Premier League goal

    Match Report

    IBO Reporter : channonite

    |The Alternative Match Report. I had started to write the match report in my normal style when a friend forwarded his 16 year old grandson's take on the match from Hong Kong. Although brief, I really liked both his style and his passion. On top of that, I agreed with what he wrote, although not a match report in the conventional sense, it is rather more a step through the Saints team with appropriate comments. So, in the spirit of offering something a little different, here is what he wrote, although to protect the innocent I am not going to embarrass him by naming him, let's just call him "Our Man in Hong Kong".

    The 'Not Quite a Match Report'

    From Our Man in Hong Kong

    |Okay here we go:

    The Keeper

    Alex McCarthy. My grandmother could do a better job in the net than that immobile loaf of bread. He’s about as commanding as a mute person and has the leadership skills of a strawberry. He was absolutely horrible and somewhat responsible for all goals - other than the second - but his distribution was quite good, so knowing Ralph, he’ll be our starting keeper for the rest of the season. In my opinion, Forster MUST start against United, otherwise we may as well let them score.

    The Defence

    I thought Perraud had an okay game - but according to many websites he was our worst player on the pitch by a landslide - which is quite an achievement when we are starting a 49 year old Theo Walcott. He was okay going forward and I think he just needs to become accustomed to the speed of the Premier League - Good one for the future.

    Salisu was at fault for the first goal - due to the fact we have no set-in-stone leader at the back, like we used to have with Fonte, van Dijk, or Yoshida. Even Vestergaard was somewhat commanding. But, he’s young and has immense potential and seems to be a great 1 v 1 defending against the likes of Dominic Calvert-Lewin. Not sure if the paring with Stephens is really that good…

    Jack Stephens had a not so good game in my eyes. He’s great on the ball and can pull of moments of world class defending… but only once or twice a blumming season. I could probably make a tackle once a season, if I was starting every other game. He also seems a bit lost when it comes to fitness - Appears to have adopted a bit of a beer belly. or is just eight months pregnant.

    Tino Livramento, I love you. Kyle Walker-Peters is no longer walking into the starting lineup as Tino is the real deal. His attacking prowess is undeniable and his trickery is delightful. In the first half there were four certainties in life: Death, Taxes, Southampton losing 9-0 and Tino Livramento absolutely bossing Richarlison. But then in the second half he got recognisably tired (To be fair he is 18 and that was his debut) and his movement on and off the ball was a bit lacklustre. But great potential and I’d love to see a lineup with both Tino and KWP

    The Midfield

    Theo Walcott. Uhhh, why weren't Tella or Stu starting??? Ralph said it was down to Walcott’s defensive acumen, but we have seen Stu play as the 6 (Romeos position) on many occasions and put up great defensive performances. I’m certain Ralph has a soft spot for Championship level players such as Walcott and Redmond - or they blackmail him. To be honest though, his linkup with Tino was noticeable, but I have to think that Stu would have done a better job at slowing play down and making chances. Honestly not really too much to say, other than a very average performance.

    Tella (sub) He came on pretty much after the game, so it’s unfair for me to berate him.

    James Ward-Prowse had a very average game in all honesty and was at fault for the second beauty of a goal. The transfers and his injury will be two factors going into that - Still, the captain should put up a better performance. He did have some good tackles though, but also gave up quite a few fouls.

    Romeu was good I thought, he played with great intensity and put Richarlison in his place, after he dove to the ground like a beautifully gracious beached whale. And he was wearing a cool head protector thing, which made him look like a Ninja.

    Diallo (sub) Played about fourteen seconds but made a good pass or two.

    Moussa Djenepo honestly played well, but he still has the decision making of Dani Osvaldo when he sees Fonte in the changing room. Made a good run or two and his link up with Perraud was good. He also showed good intensity on defence and tracked back well.

    The Forwards

    Ché Adams had a great game - my Saints Man of the Match easily. Got the assist after persistent pressing and always made progressive passes. I loved the linkup with Djenepo and Armstrong and it filled me with hope for the rest of the season.

    Adam Armstrong, I love you more than I love King Tino. The new King of the South Coast is here - and blimey is he good! His persistency and willingness to make a defensive impact was great and his finish was nothing short of gorgeous. He is also flipping fast. Oh my goodness, you blink and you miss him (or my stream was showing at about four frames so I quite literally couldn’t see him).

    Adam Armstrong celebrates his goal with Ché Adams, who provided the assist

    Match Statistics


    • Referee: Andy Madley
    • Assistants: Adrian Holmes, Eddie Smart
    • Fourth Official: Tony Harrington
    • VAR: Darren England
    • Assistant VAR: Dan Robathan.

    • Attendance: 38,487


    • 48% Possession
    • 14 Shots
    • 6 Shots on Target
    • 3 Goals
    • 6 Corners
    • 13 Fouls


    • 52% Possession
    • 6 Shots
    • 3 Shots on Target
    • 1 Goals
    • 8 Corners
    • 15 Fouls

    Livramento was a revelation, but the youngster unsurprisingly eventually ran out of steam.

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