Southampton and Huddersfield play out draw in final Premier League game


Southampton 1-1 Huddersfield

Huddersfield fans celebrated their final game in the Premier League as they prepared for life in the Championship, with a trip down to the sunny south coast as they faced Southampton at St Mary’s.

The travelling fans were rewarded for the continued support throughout their two season stay in the top flight with a free away jersey from the Huddersfield chairman. A gesture which surmised the way the club was run and how the fans are a vital part of their growth in the last five years.

Southampton meanwhile, hoped to finish the season on a high, with what would be a rare home win for the St Mary’s faithful. Fortunes had improved since Ralph Hassenhuttl took over in late 2018 but a disappointing outing at West Ham last time around caused a few groans about some individuals on the pitch.

The visitors started brightly, forcing Angus Gunn into an early save before pinning Southampton in their own penalty box with a barrage of long balls including a corner from Alex Pritchard. But the defensive duo of Jan Bednarek and Jack Stephens held strong.

Aaron Mooy went close on 15 minutes, firing wide of the left post after he burst through the centre. Danny Ings soon replied with an effort of his own which he too skewed wide.

Ings then got in behind the defence and tried to latch onto an Oriol Romeu through ball, but the English forward failed to beat Joel Coleman to the ball and the keeper gathered to set his side on a counter attack. Juninho Bacuna had the perfect opportunity to help Huddersfield take the lead, he had options in better positions than himself but opted to shoot and blazed the ball over the bar.

Southampton took the lead on 41 minutes, against the run of play in the first half. Nathan Redmond scores his 9th goal of the season, but few better than this. He weaved his way past a number of Huddersfield players before unleashing an effort into the top corner, giving Coleman no chance. That strike gave Southampton a 1-0 lead at the break.

Matt Targett replaced Shane Long at half time, the Irishmen ended the Premier League season with five goals. Soon after the restart, James Ward-Prowse rattled the crossbar from range, as Southampton started the second half on the front foot.

Although it was Huddersfield who scored early in the second half. Alex Pritchard seized onto a loose ball after an error by Angus Gunn and slotted the ball into the back of the net to equalise.

Ward-Prowse had another opportunity to score and put his side in the lead but he failed to connect properly with Matt Targett’s cross. Ings also headed towards the goal but it was cleared off the line and out for a corner.

Charlie Austin replaced Danny Ings in what many expect to be his final game in a Southampton shirt, whilst Oriol Romeu made way for Josh Sims as Southampton looked to push for a late winner. Jan Siewert responded by bringing Steve Mounie on to replace goalscorer Alex Pritchard.

Neither side could find a winner, but Hassenhuttl would have learned from this, his side were often toothless against a far inferior footballing team. Huddersfield fans will relish the point, the performance and the day out. Championship football awaits but Town boss Siewert will hope he can return the top flight at the first time of asking.


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