U23 Report: Saints 0-3 Man City

By SFC Media Mon 24 Oct Saints U23 vs Man City U23
Mon 24 Oct 7.00PM
Premier League 2
Southampton
0
Man City
3
Fernandes [34' 54'] Gardos [og 57']
Diallo 79
Referee: Craig Hicks | Venue: Staplewood Campus | Attendance: 0

Southampton Under-23s suffered a 3-0 defeat at home to Manchester City in their latest Premier League 2 fixture.

Only one goal separated the two teams in the table ahead of the clash, and Martin Hunter made five changes to his side from their previous 0-0 stalemate against Arsenal.
 
Harry Lewis returned to replace Alex McCarthy in goal, whilst Alfie Jones, Harrison Reed, Ollie Cook, Callum Slattery and Harley Willard were all granted starting berths.
 
It didn’t take long for Saints to trouble Billy O’Brien in the visitor’s goal. Tyreke Johnson worked enough space to rifle a low strike from distance, but the City stopper was equal to it and then reacted quickly to deny the onrushing Willard on the rebound.
 
The visitors soon responded, however. Aaron Nemane burst into the right of the Saints penalty area and squared for the lurking Brahim Diaz to tap in from close range, but the ball just escaped the Spanish midfielder.
 
At this stage in the game, City really started to find their stride. Paolo Fernandes, in particular, saw two strikes from the left of the area whistle just wide of Lewis’ far post, whilst winger Nemane continued to threaten.
 
Despite this, Saints came close to breaking the deadlock on the half-hour mark. Thomas O’Connor’s left-footed free kick swung over the City wall, but grazed the roof of the net as it skimmed just over the crossbar.
 
Moments later, Fernandes gave the visitors the advantage. Bursting forward with a diagonal run into the right of the penalty area, the Spaniard then reversed his finish to drill a low effort into Lewis’ far corner and open the scoring.
 
Having protected their one-goal lead into the break, City then made two changes during the interval as Ed Francis and Luke Bolton replaced Erik Sarmiento and Nemane.
 
Then on the 54th minute, Fernandes doubled his evening’s tally. Having made the most of referee Craig Hicks’ decision to play advantage on the left flank, the Spaniard strode towards the penalty area and released a left-footed effort into Lewis’ far corner.
 
Three minutes later, City made it three.  Florin Gardos could do little else but watch on as a low cross from the right ricochet off his trailing leg and bounced over Lewis into the Saints net.
 
Having put his side in the driver’s seat heading into the closing stages of the game, City's Fernandes then made way for Will Patching on the 77th minute.
 
Despite the deficit, Saints continued to create chances right into the final throes of the game, however the City defence remained resolute to keep them at bay and record a 3-0 away victory.

Southampton

1
Harry Lewis (GK)
2
Yan Valery
3
Jake Vokins
4
Alfie Jones (C)
5
Ollie Cook
Ben Rowthorn (57′)
6
Florin Gardos
Aaron O'Driscoll (61′)
7
Siph Mdlalose
8
Thomas O'Connor
9
Tyreke Johnson
10
Callum Slattery
11
Harley Willard
Jonathan Afolabi (71′)
13
Adam Parkes
12
Aaron O'Driscoll
14
Will Smallbone
15
Jonathan Afolabi
16
Ben Rowthorn

Man City

1
Billy O'Brien (GK) (C)
2
James Horsfield
3
Cameron Humphrey
4
Jacob Davenport
5
Erik Sarmiento
Ed Francis (45′)
6
Sadou Diallo
7
Aaron Nemane
Luke Bolton (45′)
8
Rodney Kongolo
9
Brahim Diaz
10
Paolo Fernandes
Will Patching (77′)
11
Javairo Dilrosun
13
Daniel Grimshaw
12
Ed Francis
14
Matthew Smith
15
Will Patching
16
Luke Bolton
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