Awww yeah....Arsenal 1-0 Southampton

Arsenal vs. Southampton

1' Southampton gets a quick free-kick, but it comes to nothing.
2' The Saints fans are in fine voice tonight...and why not? They have a chance in this one, I think.
3' Arsenal's settled into the game, and have come up with some probing runs to worry the Saints defense a little.
5' Vieira makes a brilliant run right down the heart of the park, but the one-two with Ljungberg is muffed by the Swede. What a run, though! Toure then makes a similar run, but can't quite control it in the end.
6' The Arse look real, real good so far.
7' Bergkamp has twice tried his old volley-over-the-defense trick, but he just doesn't have that level of magic anymore. This time at least gives Parlour a free shot from outside the area, but Parlour fires well wide.
8' It's weird when you say that the home side has to weather the storm in the first 10-15 minutes or so, but there you go...Arsenal is just dominating the possession.
8' Southampton's back four has also been good, though...they're not letting Arsenal get a pass into the area.
10' Prutton hacks down Pires, but rightly only gets a warning. I was afraid we'd see a yellow already.
11' Clichy sure isn't afraid to make a run right into the teeth of the opponents' defense. I like that in an attacking fullback.
11' Beautiful pass from Henry up to Pires, but he's closed down by three Saints defenders.
13' Wonderful ball from some Saint up to Phillips, but his low shot is right at Lehmann. Actually, replay shows it was a better save than it looked.
14' Henry takes a pass from his own half, runs right through everyone, and fires high from the top of the area, only for Niemi to make a fantastic leaping save. Corner comes to nothing.
15' Henry continues to terrorize the defense, as he runs from the touchline down to the goalline, and then crosses right onto the head of a wide-open Bergkamp...but th header is terrible, and trickles well wide. DB10 should have done much better, and this SHOULD have been 1-0.
16' A Saints' free kick goes into the area and troubles the Arsenal briefly, but it's cleared into touch. The resulting throw-in to Svensson catches everyone by surprise except Lehmann, who gathers well.
18' Southampton is starting to see much more of the ball now.
19' Parlour steals a bad square pass off the foot of a Saints player, and his shot takes a deflection, forcing Niemi to go down well to save.
20'' Vieira finds Pires, and his drive from outside the area is held well by Niemi.
22' Bergkamp wastes a beautiful build-up from the back with a terrible square pass to nobody in particular. He won't go the full 90...bet on it.
24' Southampton gets a nice cross from the wing into the area, but Lehmann punches it out well.
25' Bergkamp makes Niemi panic on a back-pass, and actually deflects the kick. Sadly, it went into touch instead of in the net...good effort, though.
26' All this possession, all the shots on goal for the Arsenal...yep, this has a Saints goal written ALL over it.
28' Parlour gives is away, they get it out to Beattie who's all the way on the wing, and his cross is kicked out for a corner.
29' Some handbags are going on in the area...Phillips stamped Lehmann on the foot...no yellow, of course.
29' The corner rebounds out to Higginbotham, whose volley goes well over the bar. Good effort for someone who isn't an offensive threat, though.
33' The beautiful interplay of the first part of the half has downgraded into missed passes and miscommunication from both sides.
34' Henry does a wonderful job to get away from Telfer, but his shot goes about 9 astronomical units wide.
35' GOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAALLLLLL! Henry with a sensational through-ball to spring Pires past the defense. Super Rob, one-on-one with the goalkeeper, easily slots home low past Niemi's left. One-Nil to the Arsenal!
38' Ljungberg gets shoved down, gets right back up, passes up to DB10, who earns a corner.
39' Short corner comes to nothing.
40' You know, I miss the stale-beer smell of Nevada Smith's when I'm watching a match at home.
40' Arsenal's travelling fans are revelling in the Tott'Scum being in a relegation place, as it stands now.
41' The Saints can barely get a touch on the ball, now...Arsenal are just smothering them.
42' Henry makes a wonderful play to steal the ball, it comes out to Ljungberg on the flank, and his brilliant cross is headed out well by the Saints. The rebound comes to Henry, but his shot blazes well over the bar.
44' The Saints finally threaten again, as Prutton steals, and it's worked up into the area. Griffit's nice ball into the area catches Phillips a bit by surprise. It comes back out the flank, and the cross is flicked on wide by Phillips.
45' Vieira hacks down Beattie, and I imagine he's very lucky to not get a yellow.
45' Kolo clears well on the ensuing freekick.
45' Griffit does very well to earn a throw-in against two defenders, but the call goes Arsenal's way. I think the Saints got hosed, there.
45' Steven Dunn blows for half-time. Overall, Arsenal dominated the half, but Southampton has threatened JUST enough to convince me that they're still in the reckoning.

47' Vieira shows a wonderful touch in getting past a defender, up to Ljungberg, who gets hacked down outside the area. No call, of course. Real highlight-reel stuff from PV4, however.
48' A bit of miscommunication between Lehmann and Clichy, Clichy does wlel to clear it out for a corner. The corner comes to nothing for the Saints.
51' Svensson takes down Bergkamp...giving the Arse a free kick from 30 yards out.
51' Henry goes for goal, and his beautiful curler goes just an inch or two over the bar...Niemi never moved.
52' The Saints have a new record attendance today...32,000+. Good on them, I say.
54' A bouncing ball in the box from a bad clearance comes to a wide open Freddie, but Niemi makes a wonder save force a corner.
55' The corner is cleared easily by the Southampton defense.
57' Brett Ormerod is on for Griffit. Good change...Ormerod scores big goals on occasion. 3 strikers for Saints now.
59' Another change for Saints...Darren Kenton is on for Baird. I know absolutely nothing about this guy...the announcer says he played 200 games for Norwich.
60' Telfer takes down Kolo, free kick from the touchline.
61' The kick rebounds out for Henry, but his shot is amazingly bad. Happens to the best of us, mate.
62' The Saints get a halfway-dangerous free kick, but they make a total mess out of it. Gotta convert those set pieces.
63' Parlour with the foul, so Southampton gets another chance. This one from Telfer is better, but the Gunners clear.
66' Shouts for Higginbotham handballing in the box, replay shows that it was close. However, if it's not a dead-on lock, there's no reason to call a penalty in a match this close for something that certainly wasn't diliberate.
67' Niemi makes something of a hash out of a tame low shot from Ljungberg, but there's nothing around him but red-and-white striped shirts.
67' Henry is hacked down, free kick to the Arsenal. This is probably 35-40 yards out.
68' Short free kick to Kolo, who turns it over immediately.
69' Pires with another freekick, this time from the touchline, but it's cleared out by Southampton.
70' Phillips does well down the touchline to avoid two Arsenal defenders, but his cross is taken very well by Lehmann.
71' Kanu is warming up for the Gunners.
72' Clichy makes a nice run down the wing before being forced off the ball. In two years, this kid's going to be awesome.
72' Actually, someone else on Arsenal is going to come on, too, but no mention has been made yet. OK, they just did...it's Edu who is also waiting.
73' Phillips makes an incisive run, but PV4 forces him into a less-dangerous open space, out to Telfer, who finds Beattie, but the defense easily cancels him out.
74' Ljungberg is off for Edu, DB10 is off for Kanu. Told ya so.
76' Rory Delap with the worst throw-in in recorded history, as he tosses it right over Arsenal's endline.
76' Henry finds some space outside the area, but the defenders close him down enough to force him into a bad wide shot.
77' Another change on the cards for Saints...I admire Gordon Strachan quite a bit. He's not afraid to throw caution to the wind to get something from a game.
78' Long ball into Arsenal's box, Beattie collides with Lehmann, JL1 drops the ball, but gathers it quickly.
78' Telfer is off for Neil McCann. That's all 3 subs for the Saints now.
80' Henry turns on the gas, but gets tackled by two Saints defenders at once. Make your own joke about how it probably takes that many anyway. Niemi easily punches out the ensuing corner.
81' The Saints are hanging around...one mistake, and this is tied. I hope Arsenal keeps that in mind.
82' Edu tries a drive from well out, but it ends up in row Z.
83' Pires returns the favor from the first goal, finding Henry. Henry slips, recovers, then gets a shot away. Niemi gets a paw on it, but Pires slips when he could have had an easy tap-in. Lucky for the Saints, but where on earth were the markers?
84' A bit of a nervous sequence in Arsenal's box leads to Pires clearing out for a long throw-in.The Saints are starting to find their way again.
85' The ball comes tantalizingly into the area, but Phillips is called for a foul on Lehmann. Rightly so, too.
87' McCann hacks Pires from behind, and we have our first yellow card.
88' Pires is coming off, as Lauren makes a welcome return from injury.
89' Lauren's first touch goes awry, and he has to foul his man to prevent a counter-attack.
90' Kanu with a nice ball for Henry, but's it's just a tad too strong for TH14 to catch up to.
90' Parlour called for a foul on the touchline, but it seemed like six of one, half-dozen of the other with Higginbotham.
90' 2 minutes of stoppage time, says the fourth official.
90' Lauren puts it out for a throw, which ends up with a nice cross into the box. Arsenal clears, though.
90' Arsenal's fans are the ones singing now.
90' Ormerod with a dangerous flick-on, but Arsenal clears.
90' McCann with the cross in, Lehmann catches it easily. He must have gotten bumped by someone, as he loses it and hurls the ball at a Saints player. Dunn is about to card him, then thinks better of it, and just blows the final whistle. JL1 probably should have gotten a yellow.
90' So, that's it. Another 3 points in the bag, thanks to a scrappy, ugly win. Still only 1 point behind the Manks, and now three


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