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Southampton 2-0 Manchester City: Match report, player ratings, fan reaction and more

All the action and reaction as Southampton shock Manchester City in the Carabao Cup

Southampton and under-fire Nathan Jones produced an astonishing performance to shock Carabao Cup specialists Manchester City to book a place in the Carabao Cup semi-final and hand their fans a real hope of silverware once more via the competition.

Despite the differences in form heading into the tie, Nathan Jones’ struggling side flew out of the blocks against a rotated Manchester City side and their dominance was rewarded when Sekou Mara fired them into a deserved lead with his first goal for the Saints since his summer move, losing Kyle Walker to power the ball home on the run.

While the watching faithful at St Mary’s, who just days before were calling for their new manager to be sacked, were still pinching themselves about the scoreline, Moussa Djenepo doubled their lead and left them in a commanding position after half an hour, catching stand-in shot-stopper Stefan Ortega well off his line and proceeding to produce a wonderful lob from 30 yards out.

Pep Guardiola shook things up at the interval, sending on Kevin De Bruyne as well as Nathan Ake and Manuel Akanji, before Erling Haaland arrived 12 minutes later to leave something close to a first team on the pitch.

Still, however, the home side created the better chances, tenaciously winning the ball back in midfield before breaking in numbers on a fragile looking Manchester City side. and Nathan Jones’ side thought that they had put the game beyond all doubt with 15 minutes to play, only for the offside flag to rule out Che Adams’ tap in at the far post.

Player ratings:

Southampton FC

  • GK: Gavin Bazunu (7) – Didn’t have much to do against his old side but showed plenty of confidence to win the ball
  • RB: Lyanco (7) – Did brilliantly to win the ball for Southampton’s opener and flew into tackles with the sort of commitment that endears players to their fans.
  • CB: Duje Ćaleta-Car (8) – Didn’t put a foot wrong.
  • CB: Mohamed Salisu (8) – Like Caleta-Car, didn’t have a great deal to do but was excellent in what he did.
  • LB: Kyle Walker-Peters (9) – A constant threat down the Southampton flank, especially when switched to the right in the second half.
  • CM: James Ward-Prowse (7) – Didn’t have his best game but was still solid.
  • CM: Romeu Lavia (8) – Had a wonderful outing against his former side until injury ended his night on the hour.
  • CM: Ibrahima Diallo (7) – Got through a lot of work in central midfield. A yellow card blots his copybook but didn’t detract from his performance.
  • RW: Adam Armstrong (7) – Tenacious and hard-working off the ball, didn’t look like scoring but linked up play well.
  • ST: Sekou Mara (7) – Took his goal excellently in the first half and looked a threat on the break in the early parts of the second until replaced.
  • LW: Moussa Djenepo (8) – Took his goal excellently and worked hard off the ball to help his side remain compact defensively.


  • Romain Perraud (6) – Solid when he came on, did his job well without getting forward too much.
  • Che Adams (7) – A constant threat on the last shoulder and worked hard off the ball too.
  • Mohamed Elyounoussi (7) – Added some much needed fresh legs to the Saints side.
  • Mislav Orsic (N/A) – On for his debut in the final few minutes.

Manchester City

  • GK: Stefan Ortega (4) – Was caught in no-man’s land for Southampton’s second goal and continues to fail to inspire confidence as Ederson’s back up.
  • RB: Joao Cancelo (3) – Gave the ball away with his first touch of the game. Didn’t improve much and looks miles off his imperious best at the moment, while a foul throw at 2-0 down with five minutes to play summed up his night.
  • CB: Kyle Walker (4) – Asked to play out of position, perhaps with an eye to the Manchester Derby at the weekend. Showed his inexperience when he lost Mara for the opener and didn’t look at all comfortable before being hooked at half time.
  • CB: Aymeric Laporte (5) – The best of a bad bunch in the Manchester City defence in the first half, he was a rare beacon of calm for the visitors.
  • LB: Sergio Gomez (4) – Continues to look well out of his depth in a Manchester City shirt at the moment and was taken off at the break.
  • CM: Kalvin Phillips (4) – Unable to dictate the Manchester City play in the same way that Rodri can, and looked well off the pace on his belated full Manchester City debut.
  • CM: Ilkay Gundogan (5) – Was well-marshalled by Southampton and couldn’t provide his usual excellence.
  • CM: Phil Foden (5) – Carried the ball well but couldn’t have his usual impact against a resolute Southampton midfield.
  • RW: Cole Palmer (4) – Couldn’t get into the game either in defence or attack and was sloppy with his passing. Taken off at half time.
  • ST: Julian Alvarez (5) – Hardly got a kick in the first half. Fired wide early in the second but was othewise quiet.
  • LW: Jack Grealish (4) – Another night to forget for Grealish in a Manchester City shirt. Was City’s most fluent attacker but doesn’t say much.


  • Kevin De Bruyne (6) – Made something happen within a minute and offered some threat but his final ball lacked it’s usual deadly verve.
  • Manuel Akanji (6) – Made the Cityzens more solid and helped them wrestle some control back.
  • Nathan Ake (6) – Solid but unspectacular.
  • Erling Haaland (5) – Very quiet when he came on,
  • Rodri (6) – Much more effective than Phillips, who he replaced. His spot won’t be in danger any time soon on current viewing.

Expert Analysis

Fan Reaction


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Ben Browning

Football writer and analyst. Long-time writer of all things Arsenal and avid watcher of European football. Happy to discuss all things football over on Twitter.

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