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Southampton 0-0 Newcastle: Magpies remain winless after St Mary's stalemate

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Saints draw positive result for Newcastle - Benitez

Newcastle manager Rafael Benitez described his side's goalless draw away to Southampton as a "positive result", despite the Magpies extending their winless start to the Premier League season.

Saints midfielder Mario Lemina went closest to breaking the deadlock midway through the first half but his clever flick struck the post as Mark Hughes' side failed to register a first home win of the campaign.

The hosts had the better chances to win the game, however Newcastle goalkeeper Martin Dubravka produced a string of fine saves to preserve his clean sheet and end Newcastle's run of three consecutive league defeats.

"We are in a difficult position but it is a small step forward in terms of confidence and showing the team can compete," said Benitez.

"In terms of work rate and team spirit I can't complain. The fans realise it's a difficult situation and they got behind the team.

"In the circumstances it is a positive result, a clean sheet and one point away."

Southampton forward Charlie Austin did put the ball in the back of the net in the second half - but only after fouling Dubravka in a collision that eventually saw Austin withdrawn.

And, in an eventful finale, Shane Long looked destined to score but dragged his effort wide before Jack Stephens narrowly failed to meet James Ward-Prowse's floated free-kick in stoppage time.

The result means it is no win in six for Hughes' side, who remain 16th in the table and have now failed to score in their last five in the league.

Benitez's winless side, meanwhile, moved off the foot of the table courtesy of Huddersfield's defeat by Watford.

Shooting issues for winless Magpies

Martin Dubravka saves from Jack Stephen's header
Newcastle goalkeeper Martin Dubravka produced four saves to keep Southampton at bay and secure a third Premier League clean sheet of the season

Following defeat by Brighton last weekend, the club's seventh loss in their opening nine games, Newcastle fell to the foot of the Premier League table, prompting manager Benitez to admit the current situation had become the toughest of his managerial career to date.

And, after failing to score in that 1-0 defeat - despite producing 27 shots on goal - the Spaniard called on his side to be "more precise and clinical" for their trip to St Mary's.

But the Magpies failed to register a shot on target, in what appeared a crucial game for both sides on the south coast.

Indeed, they rarely threatened throughout and were lucky to leave with a point - their third of the season - as they failed to record a win in their opening 10 matches of a league season for the first time in 120 years.

The visitors had goalkeeper Dubravka to thank on several occasions, while the desire of the back-four to block shots demonstrated the sort of fight the Newcastle players must continue to show if they are to stand a chance of surviving in the top-flight this season.

Defeats for Cardiff, Fulham and Huddersfield ensured the bottom of the table remains tight, but Benitez cannot rely on the misfortunes of other clubs and a positive result against Watford is now imperative.

Saints unable to climb away from trouble

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Hughes praises Saints' 'rock solid' defensive display

Last week's goalless draw with south coast neighbours Bournemouth was described as a "statement" performance by manager Hughes, as his side ended a dismal run of three straight league defeats.

Though that point drew a line under a difficult period, another stalemate at home to Newcastle extended Saints' winless run as well as their drought in front of goal - on an afternoon that could have allowed Hughes' side to create daylight between themselves and the relegation places.

It was a familiar case of missed opportunities for Southampton, who, like Newcastle, have only registered six league goals so far, as the hosts failed to find a breakthrough despite their 22 attempts.

Lemina was often Saints' biggest threat going forward and was unlucky to be denied by the post, while Ryan Bertrand and Cedric Soares offered excellent offensive support from the flanks.

Defender Jack Stephens' proved dangerous from set-pieces and saw a powerful header saved by the alert Dubravka just before the interval.

But the final few minutes, as Stephens' went agonisingly close to securing the points and Long failed to hit the target from close-range, summed up Southampton's predicament in front of goal so far this season.

At the back, Hughes' side were solid. But their proximity to the drop-zone after 10 games is a growing concern and, with champions Manchester City arriving at St Mary's next weekend, pressure on Hughes will likely continue to mount.

"It's disappointing once again in respect of not getting what we deserved, we had 22 shots and we weren't able to convert any of them," said Hughes.

"At the end of the day it's back-to-back clean sheets, but at the top end of the pitch we need to start scoring goals.

"Clearly we are creating chances, right at the death we had a good chance for Shane, there were balls bobbling around the box, but sometimes you need something to go in off someone's backside and the football gods aren't smiling on us at the moment."

Man of the match - Mario Lemina (Southampton)

Mario Lemina
The Southampton midfielder Mario Lemina was effective in both defence and attack, regaining possession more than any other player while also going close to making the difference in front of goal.

Worst start for 120 years - the stats

  • Newcastle have failed to win any of their opening 10 matches of a league season for just the second time in their history - last doing so 120 years ago in the 1898-99 top-flight campaign.
  • Each of the last six sides who failed to win any of their opening 10 Premier League matches went on to be relegated.
  • Newcastle United are now winless in each of their last eight away games in the Premier League, losing five and last winning on the road in April.
  • Southampton have failed to win any of their opening five home league matches at home for the first time since 2001-02.
  • And the Saints have failed to score in five straight Premier League matches for the first time since April 2001.
  • Southampton winger Nathan Redmond has now had 19 shots in the Premier League this season, more than any other player yet to score a single goal in the competition so far.
  • Of managers he has faced at least 10 times in the Premier League, against no other has Southampton manager Mark Hughes won fewer matches against in the competition than current Newcastle boss Rafa Benitez (P14 W1 D7 L6).

What's next?

Southampton are in league cup action on Tuesday night (19:30 GMT) as they travel to face Leicester in the round of 16, before welcoming Manchester City to St Mary's on Sunday (15:00 GMT).

Newcastle host Watford on Saturday (15:00 GMT).

Line-ups

Southampton

  • 1McCarthy
  • 2Cédric Soares
  • 5Stephens
  • 6Hoedt
  • 21Bertrand
  • 22Redmond
  • 14RomeuSubstituted forWard-Prowseat 78'minutes
  • 18Lemina
  • 11ElyounoussiSubstituted forLongat 78'minutes
  • 10AustinSubstituted forGabbiadiniat 63'minutes
  • 9Ings

Substitutes

  • 3Yoshida
  • 4Vestergaard
  • 7Long
  • 16Ward-Prowse
  • 17Armstrong
  • 20Gabbiadini
  • 28Gunn

Newcastle

  • 12Dubravka
  • 22Yedlin
  • 6Lascelles
  • 18Fernandez
  • 3Dummett
  • 11Ritchie
  • 8Shelvey
  • 10DiaméSubstituted forKi Sung-yuengat 76'minutes
  • 15Kenedy
  • 17PérezSubstituted forRondónat 69'minutes
  • 13MutoSubstituted forAtsuat 80'minutesBooked at 90mins

Substitutes

  • 4Ki Sung-yueng
  • 5Schär
  • 9Rondón
  • 19Manquillo
  • 21Joselu
  • 26Darlow
  • 30Atsu
Referee:
Chris Kavanagh
Attendance:
30,736

Match Stats

Home TeamSouthamptonAway TeamNewcastle
Possession
Home50%
Away50%
Shots
Home22
Away6
Shots on Target
Home4
Away0
Corners
Home7
Away2
Fouls
Home9
Away12

Live Text

Match ends, Southampton 0, Newcastle United 0.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Southampton 0, Newcastle United 0.

Attempt missed. Salomón Rondón (Newcastle United) right footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Christian Atsu with a cross following a fast break.

Corner, Southampton. Conceded by Paul Dummett.

Booking

Christian Atsu (Newcastle United) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Mario Lemina (Southampton) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Christian Atsu (Newcastle United).

Shane Long (Southampton) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Paul Dummett (Newcastle United).

Attempt missed. Manolo Gabbiadini (Southampton) left footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Shane Long with a headed pass.

Attempt missed. Shane Long (Southampton) right footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by Cédric Soares.

Attempt missed. DeAndre Yedlin (Newcastle United) right footed shot from outside the box is too high following a set piece situation.

Foul by Mario Lemina (Southampton).

Christian Atsu (Newcastle United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Corner, Southampton. Conceded by Paul Dummett.

Corner, Southampton. Conceded by Federico Fernández.

Manolo Gabbiadini (Southampton) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Federico Fernández (Newcastle United).

Attempt blocked. Salomón Rondón (Newcastle United) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Jonjo Shelvey.

Attempt missed. Mario Lemina (Southampton) right footed shot from outside the box is too high. Assisted by Danny Ings.

Foul by Christian Atsu (Newcastle United).

Mario Lemina (Southampton) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Salomón Rondón (Newcastle United).

Cédric Soares (Southampton) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution

Substitution, Newcastle United. Christian Atsu replaces Yoshinori Muto.

Jonjo Shelvey (Newcastle United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Cédric Soares (Southampton).

Attempt saved. Jack Stephens (Southampton) header from the centre of the box is saved in the top right corner. Assisted by Danny Ings with a cross.

Substitution

Substitution, Southampton. James Ward-Prowse replaces Oriol Romeu.

Substitution

Substitution, Southampton. Shane Long replaces Mohamed Elyounoussi.

Foul by Kenedy (Newcastle United).

Mario Lemina (Southampton) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

DeAndre Yedlin (Newcastle United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Manolo Gabbiadini (Southampton).

Substitution

Substitution, Newcastle United. Ki Sung-yueng replaces Mohamed Diamé.

Foul by Yoshinori Muto (Newcastle United).

Wesley Hoedt (Southampton) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Attempt blocked. Manolo Gabbiadini (Southampton) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Mohamed Elyounoussi.

Attempt missed. Manolo Gabbiadini (Southampton) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the left. Assisted by Jack Stephens.

Attempt missed. Jack Stephens (Southampton) header from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Ryan Bertrand with a cross following a corner.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Liverpool108202041626
2Man City97202632323
3Chelsea96302071321
4Arsenal970222111121
5Tottenham9702167921
6Bournemouth106221912720
7Watford106131612419
8Everton94321512315
9Wolves1043399015
10Man Utd94231516-114
11Brighton104241113-214
12Leicester104151616013
13West Ham10226915-68
14Burnley92251017-78
15Crystal Palace9216511-67
16Southampton10145614-87
17Cardiff10127923-145
18Fulham101271128-175
19Newcastle10037614-83
20Huddersfield10037421-173
View full Premier League table

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