Soccer Premier League

Arsenal Give Saints Their First Premier-League Thrashing

Southampton, shell-shocked by Arsenal – original image by Ryu Voelkel on Flickr


Arsenal six Southampton nil is a scoreline that, as a Southampton fan, I want to forget pretty quickly.

Arsenal have started the season fairly well with two draws and a win, but seemed to be having trouble scoring until their third game, and now seem to be fully over that after the six goals on Saturday. Southampton, on the other hand, haven’t had a problem scoring (managing to get two past each Manchester team) but it is instead points that they lack, and will now go into their fifth game of the season on nil points.

Southampton looked like a beaten team from the start, which is what I found the most worrying. They may have lost their previous three games, but they had shown real fight and had played some great attacking football, giving both Manchester City and United a bit of a scare. But against Arsenal they seemed to fall apart right from the beginning. Arsenal played lovely football with great passing and control, and looked like a complete team.

If you ask any Southampton fan what the problem is they will most likely tell you it is the defence. With the transfer window closed there is not much that can be done about this, unless they can find a gem on a free transfer, so they’ll need to work with what they already have. Southampton are known for their youth team (Theo Walcott and Alex Chamberlain both moved from there to Arsenal), so maybe it is time to give a young defender like Luke Shaw a chance.

Southampton had been given one of the hardest starts to a season I can remember (Man City away, Wigan home, Man United home, and Arsenal away) and realistically could not have expected much, if anything, from these games. Next Saturday is when their season really starts, with Aston Villa at home, and it is vital they pick something up from this game. They need to regain the winning mentality they have had the past few years, and hopefully they will draw a line under the Arsenal game and move on.

Both of these teams will have different hopes for the season, with Southampton wanting to stay up, and Arsenal wanting to finish as high as possible. There has already been some talk after Saturday of Arsenal being title contenders and it would be good to see them pushing the Manchester teams so we don’t just have a two horse race. I find it hard to give a non-biased view on whether Southampton will stay up; my heart says yes, but my head isn’t quite so sure. Only time will tell, and it is far too early to judge now.


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