• Saints 1-0 West Brom

    Our first home win since November came about thanks to a moment of magic from Gaston Ramirez and a calm finish from Adam Lallana in an otherwise poor game.

    The brightest news before kick-off was that our number one goalkeeper Artur Boruc was back in after recovering from illness, for West Brom their new manager Pepe Mel looked on from the stands after the sacking of Steve Clarke.

    The first half saw Saints dominate without breaking through. Both Rickie Lambert and Jay Rodriguez saw shots wasted as West Brom sat back, let us come at them and dealt with the pressure we applied. Only one long range shot provided any attacking threat for the Baggies in the first half but despite this, we simply couldn't breach the Throstle's defences. For those who hadn't fallen asleep the half time whistle brought some blessed relief as we took in the statistical positives alongside our half time refreshments.

    HT 0-0


    Statistics however do not unlock stubborn defences by themselves as we further saw as the second half began. West Brom were still content to just waste time when possible as we laboured in attack. Something a little maverick, a little unpredictable was needed to make the difference and it soon seemed that this factor was to be Gaston Ramirez.

    After coming on for Jack Cork, Ramirez soon set about making a mark on the game and while he showed flashes of his frustrating worst by being pushed off the ball he also showed signs of his sparkling talent with some smart touches and movement.



    Lallana wishes his mother happy birthday as he profited from Ramirez' stunning assist


    A first-time instinctive pass from Gaston finally unlocked our opponents door, with his back to the West Brom goal-line on the right wing Ramirez floated the ball towards the centre of the West Brom defence between their two centre-backs. Adam Lallana received the ball to his feet infront of the goalkeeper and complemented the quality of the pass with a calm finish beyond Foster to finally give us the lead.

    A late rally from West Brom was too little too late as Artur Boruc reminded us what we have missed by pulling off a wonderful save with his feet from close range, Shane Long's close range strike couldn't outsmart our Polish stopper leaving West Brom beginning a new era on a losing note. Saints meanwhile stabilised ourselves after our recent poor form in ninth place in the league, 4 points behind Newcastle ahead of us and 7 points clear of the pack behind us on thirty points.

    FT 1-0


    Teams:

    Saints: Boruc, Clyne, Shaw, Lovren, Fonte, Cork (Ramirez, 62) Schneiderlin, S. Davis, Rodriguez (Do Prado, 90 +1) Lallana (Ward-Prowse, 82) Lambert

    Unused Substitutes: K. Davis, Yoshida, Hooiveld, Gallagher

    West Brom: Foster, Reid, Ridgewell, McAuley (Gera, 81) Olsson, Amalfitano (Vydra, 86) Brunt, Mulumbu, Long, Anelka (Berahino, 77) Morrison

    Unused Substitutes: Myhill, Yacob, Sinclair, Lugano

    Goals:
    Lallana, 66