Southampton v Manchester City: match preview

Manchester City’s quest for 100 points come up against a Southampton side who are all but safe but technically still need a draw, after four away points in a week and with a 10-goal swing required if Swansea finally manage a win. Mark Hughes would give his prospects of staying an added boost with a return against the club who sacked him in 2009 and he has urged Saints to make a quick decision for next season. “It’s a well-run club, good club, and a good opportunity for whoever gets it,” said Hughes who arrived only in March. If City win they will set more records, however, for the most away wins in a Premier League season with 16, and the most points on the road, 50. “In the last few weeks these numbers have helped us keep focus,” said Guardiola, whose players secured the title on 15 April. Mark Continue reading "Southampton v Manchester City: match preview"

Premier League: 10 things to look out for on the final day

A wake is in store in Swansea, Klopp faced with a juggling act and a swansong for Conte and Benítez? This feature, you will note, is called ‘10 Things to Look Out For’ rather than ‘10 Things to Look Forward To’. Thank goodness for that, because there might not be much to look forward to at the Liberty Stadium on Sunday. The match between Swansea and Stoke is likely to be a wake, with both clubs wondering how the hell they got into this mess. A number of players will be making their last appearance for both sides, seeing no contradiction in the belief that they are far too good to play in the Championship. Swansea could still stay up, but they need snookers, a miracle and, most unlikely of all, at least one goal. RS Continue reading...

Southampton make Twitter dig at Swansea hotel that cancelled their stay

• Southampton endorse TripAdvisor review of hotel in Swansea
• ‘Not planning to return any time soon’ included in mocking review Southampton have poked fun at the hotel that cancelled their booking before their crucial game against Swansea City on Tuesday by endorsing a critical review of the venue on Twitter. The south coast club were bitterly upset after being prevented from staying at the Marriott Hotel in Swansea but they had the last laugh after Manolo Gabbiadini’s winner at the Liberty Stadium on Tuesday all but secured Southampton’s Premier League status and left Swansea City on the brink of relegation to the Championship. Continue reading...

Mark Hughes delighted with Southampton response against Swansea – video

Manolo Gabbiadini’s second-half goal gave Southampton a vital 1-0 win over Swansea to leave them on the verge of Premier League safety, while Swansea slipped close to relegation. Mark Hughes declared himself ‘delighted’ at the result and the response of his players who could only draw 1-1 with Everton in their last outing. Saints now sit 16th in the table, three points off the relegation zone but host champions Manchester City on the final day of the season Continue reading...

Southampton suspect ‘dark arts’ after hotel move and bus spat in Swansea

• Saints’ booking at Swansea hotel cancelled at short notice
• Squad decided to walk into stadium after being kept on bus Mark Hughes believes “dark arts” were at work at Swansea, where Manolo Gabbiadini’s second-half goal gave Southampton a hugely significant victory that takes them to the verge of Premier League safety. Gabbiadini’s goal relegated West Brom in the process and also leaves Swansea on the brink of losing their Premier League status. Related: Manolo Gabbiadini lifts Southampton out of mire and sends West Brom down Continue reading...

Mark Hughes throws off shackles to leave Swansea paralysed by doom | Nick Miller

Southampton’s manager went for the jugular with three centre-forwards and Saints are as good as safe after a wonderfully chaotic relegation showdownIt is a league of billions, of the most famous managers in the world, which prides itself on being the shiniest show in town, that moneyed owners seeking a splash of reflected glory flock to. Who knew the biggest game of the season would be between Swansea and Southampton? It was not so much a game of football, more a 90-minute test of constitutions. The top division of English football hasn’t seen a relegation play-off match in 30 years but purely on the basis of this chaotic affair it might be an issue to reconsider. Because this was essentially a play-off, and panned out like one. The volume inside the ground was that sort of loud you get when a stadium of people are too nervous to do Continue reading "Mark Hughes throws off shackles to leave Swansea paralysed by doom | Nick Miller"

Manolo Gabbiadini lifts Southampton out of mire but West Brom go down

A night of high drama and tension ended with Southampton all but securing their Premier League status for another season, Swansea staring relegation in the face and West Bromwich Albion joining Stoke City in the Championship. Manolo Gabbiadini was the player who delivered the killer blow for Mark Hughes’s team, the Italian coming off the bench to score a scrappy and untidy goal that was worth its weight in gold to Saints. Continue reading...

Swansea City v Southampton: Premier League – live!

17 min: Redmond threads a reasonable pass through to Austin, and the problem that has plagued Southampton all season becoems clear: for if Austin were Shane Long, he might have got to the before the keeper (and rounded him and missed) but Austin, a reliable finisher, has no such pace. So Fabianski runs off his line and picks the ball up.

< p class="block-time published-time"> 15 min: The home crowd are happy with the dynamic commitment of their team and the way they’re popping the ball around pretty well at times. Southampton are starting to look a tad flustered. Continue reading...

Swansea hotel says Southampton switch was not linked to relegation clash

• Marriott manager says football game not a factor in the switch
• Southampton moved to Cardiff hotel after virus outbreakThe Swansea hotel which had a virus outbreak have said Southampton were ‘able to make their own decision regarding accommodation’ before Tuesday night’s relegation clash and was not connected with the game. “It would be inappropriate for us to comment on the specifics surrounding particular bookings. Large group bookings were informed of the situation and were able to make their own decision regarding accommodation. Any suggestion that this situation is linked to the football match is completely untrue,” stated Michael Downie, general manager at the Swansea Marriott Hotel, on Tuesday afternoon. Continue reading...

Carvalhal and Hughes call for cool heads in relegation play-off furnace | Stuart James

The showdown for Premier League survival between Southampton and Swansea could be won in the mindCarlos Carvalhal stressed the need for emotional control from Swansea and Mark Hughes was preaching a similar message when he talked about calmness being the key for Southampton, although playing the game and not the occasion promises to be easier said than done at the Liberty Stadium on Tuesday night in what is essentially a relegation play-off. Level on points with only two matches remaining, Swansea and Southampton meet in a survival showdown that promises to make for captivating viewing for the neutral as both clubs chase the victory that would put them within touching distance of safety. It will be a match riddled with tension and, according to both managers, played in the mind as much as with the ball. Continue reading...

Premier League: 10 talking points from the weekend’s action

Aubameyang can revive Arsenal, Butland lays bare Stoke’s shameful truth and West Ham would be foolish to ditch Moyes Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang might not be a classic Arsène Wenger signing because he cost a lot of money and is already close to his peak but at 28 he is certainly a man who can lead the next incarnation of Arsenal. Alongside Alexandre Lacazette the duo showed how exciting Arsenal can still be even if Burnley looked like a team packed for their summer holidays as they made up the numbers, offering less energy than the post-match speeches, in what was effectively a testimonial at the Emirates. Wenger might rue the fact he missed bringing the Gabonese international Aubameyang to England earlier – a striker not deemed good enough by Milan in his youth would have made the perfect project for the outgoing manager – but he is still leaving behind something Continue reading "Premier League: 10 talking points from the weekend’s action"

Tom Davies strikes late for Everton to dent Southampton hopes of staying up

Southampton were denied a huge step towards Premier League survival when Everton denied them a second successive league victory through a last-gasp equaliser from Tom Davies. The visitors must have thought they had dome enough to win, with Nathan Redmond even bringing a late save from Jordan Pickford when Southampton had been reduced to 10 men, but when Ryan Bertrand gave the ball away with just seconds remaining Davies crashed in a shot from Idrissa Gueye’s square ball, deflecting home off Wesley Hoedt. The only consolation for Southampton is that they still managed to move out of the bottom three and above Swansea in the table, ahead of the all-important meeting in South Wales on Tuesday. There was also another reprieve for West Bromwich, who would have been relegated by a Southampton victory, but little respite for Sam Allardyce. Continue reading...