Southampton triumphant against Arsenal

Updated: 25 February 2007 08:28 IST

English Premiership leaders Arsenal suffered their third defeat of the season on Saturday as Southampton came from behind to win 3-2 at their St. Mary's ground.

Southampton triumphant against Arsenal

London:

English Premiership leaders Arsenal suffered their third defeat of the season on Saturday as Southampton came from behind to win 3-2 at their St. Mary's ground.The home team had the better of a cautious opening period - Matt Oakley's shot from the edge of the Arsenal area after 23 minutes forcing the only real save of the opening quarter. Then, with nine minutes left in the half, Arsenal's Dennis Bergkamp shot first time from Sylvain Wiltord's cross and the visitors were ahead.It seemed that Arsenal would keep their lead into the interval, but with virtually the last kick of the half, James Beattie's superb shot brought the 24 year-old striker his seventh goal in his last six games and the equaliser.Arsenal ought to have restored their lead in the 51st minute when Patrick Vieira had no fewer than three clear-cut chances in succession, but amazingly each time Southampton's goalkeeper Antti Niemi denied the French international. Gordon Strachan's team had weathered the storm and six minutes later the game turned their way. A fortunate ricochet in midfield gave Agustin Delgado a run in on goal, Sol Campbell chased him down but a clumsy tackle brought the striker to the ground and produced a red card for the England defender from referee Paul Durkin. Beattie converted the subsequent penalty with little fuss and Southampton had control against 10 men.The home crowd could hardly believe it and ten minutes later were out of their seats again when Delgado somehow squeezed the ball between Ashley Cole, Kolo Toure and the post from a Fabrice Fernandes free kick to make it 3-1.It all looked over but with ten minutes to go Thierry Henry's corner made its way to substitute Robert Pires' head and from the rebound last season's player of the year gave Arsenal a lifeline.But it was too little too late as Arsenal were beaten for the third time this season, this time by three goals to two - the only consolation being that Liverpool also lost by the same score and Arsene Wenger's side stay top of the standings. (AP)



Topics : Football
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