Southampton were full value for their 2-0 advantage against West Bromwich Albion before they survived a late surge by the Baggies to hang on 2-1 in Saturday’s FA Cup fifth-round tie at the Hawthorns.
- West Brom 1 Southampton 2
- Hoedt opens scoring for visitors
- Tadic adds second after the break
- Rondón levels soon after
- Hegazi goes close
The away outfit raced into a 2-0 lead through goals from Wesley Hoedt and Dušan Tadic in what was an entertaining encounter.
Salomón Rondón pulled a goal back soon after but it wasn’t to be for West Brom as Saints advanced to the next round.
It was a quiet opening 10 minutes at the Hawthorns although the contest exploded into life in the 11th minute when the visitors hit the front. After winning the first corner of the game, James Ward-Prowse sent in a beautiful delivery which Hoedt volleyed home with precision beyond Ben Foster.
Seven minutes later it was nearly 2-0 as the home side’s defending was again called into question from a set-piece. The ball was whipped into the box from a corner and Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg was unfortunate to see his effort blocked on the line by Baggies defenders.
Not long after winger James McClean came close to finding an equaliser for Alan Pardew’s men, but his powerful strike from distance whistled just wide with goalkeeper Alex McCarthy scrambling to cover the ground.
Just before the break, another flowing move from Saints saw Nathan Redmond feed in Guido Carrillo, however, defender Jonny Evans produced a superb block tackle to deny the forward what appeared a certain goal.
After the interval, Grzegorz Krychowiak had a chance to level matters but he saw his goal-bound attempt hit Hoedt before McCarthy in goal reacted splendidly to make a smart reflex save. Nonetheless, the away team added to their advantage in the 56th minute as Tadic got on the scoresheet.
After superb work from Argentine Carrillo on the left, he sent Tadic clear and the Serbia star lobbed Foster with finesse to double the advantage of Mauricio Pellegrino’s charges. It was a stunning counter and finish by Southampton.
With that said, two minutes later it was 2-1 as Rondón got on the end of Krychowiak’s long pass over the top to volley home spectacularly with a first-time finish on his left-foot. The home team were pouring forward and Ahmed Hegazi nearly levelled from a corner but McCarthy made the stop.
In the 81st minute, West Brom hit the woodwork through Hegazi once more before the rebound fell to Rondón, who saw his strike cleared off the line by a panicked visiting defence. At the death, Ward-Prowse had an opportunity to extend the advantage, yet his shot from Mario Lemina’s fine pass went straight at the keeper.