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Soccer-Southampton punish sloppy Everton to claim 2-0 win – Metro US

Soccer-Southampton punish sloppy Everton to claim 2-0 win

Premier League – Southampton v Everton
Premier League – Southampton v Everton

SOUTHAMPTON (Reuters) – Stuart Armstrong and substitute Shane Long scored for Southampton as they punished error-prone Everton to claim a deserved 2-0 Premier League victory at St Mary’s Stadium on Saturday.

Everton gave the ball away with a sloppy piece of play in midfield on 52 minutes to allow the home side to break forward and Armstrong drilled the ball low into the bottom corner.

Long netted the second with six minutes remaining, seconds after entering the pitch, as he rose to head past Jordan Pickford from Valentino Livramento’s cross. It was his first Premier League goal in almost two years

“After the first goal, I think you could see a difference and we were definitely able to score more goals,” Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhuttl told reporters.

“In the first (half) there were a few chances, but the second half, I think it was more dominant.

“It costs a lot of energy when you’re 1-0 up, but the guys, when they see the space, they want to play up in front, they want to create chances.

“After the second goal, I think that was exactly the way we want to play – good win, good goals, fantastic.”

The home side were quicker to the ball and won the physical battle against Frank Lampard’s team, who were sparkling in their 3-0 victory against Leeds United last weekend, but reverted to the form that has seen them dragged towards the relegation scrap this campaign.

Pickford was by far the busier of the two goalkeepers, saving brilliantly from point-blank range to deny Livramento, who flicked James Ward-Prowse’s low corner goal-wards, while Mohamed Elyounoussi also struck the crossbar.

The clean sheet was Southampton’s first since a 1-0 home win over Aston Villa in November.

They remain in 10th place with 32 points from 25 matches, while Everton are in 16th with 22 points from 23 games. The Merseyside club’s next match is at home to Manchester City on Feb. 26.

(Reporting by Nick Said; Editing by Christina Fincher and Hugh Lawson)

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