Report and free match highlights as Charly Alcarez scored his first goal for Saints to break the deadlock; Mario Lemina was dismissed for two bookable offences; Jan Bednarek scored a comical own goal to level the tie before Joao Gomes struck late to give Wolves crucial win
Southampton were undone by a sensational second-half comeback from 10-man Wolves at a hostile St Mary’s, with Joao Gomes scoring a late decider to pile more pressure on under-fire boss Nathan Jones – who has lost seven of his eight league games in charge.
Gomes’ clinical strike came 15 minutes after Jan Bednarek’s own goal canceled out Charly Alcaraz’s opener for the hosts, who remain rooted to the foot of the Premier League table – four points adrift of safety.
Jones, who went immediately down the tunnel at the full-time whistle, commended his side post-match for an “excellent 60 minutes”, which he subsequently identified as “the best we’ve played at home.”
Saints wrestled initial control of the tie during two manic first-half minutes, where Alcaraz broke the deadlock with a sweet strike that went in via the inside of the post (25) and Wolves midfielder Mario Lemina was dismissed for a second bookable offence (27).
But the visitors rallied triumphantly after the break, sparked by the introduction of Adama Traore, who played his part in rescuing the tie for Julen Lopetegui’s rejuvenated side by forcing a game-changing mistake from Bednarek to level the scores (72).
Fellow substitute Gomes then fired an 87th minute winner, catching Lyanco napping, who watched on as the Brazilian stroked the ball into the top right corner of the net. “We settled for a sucker punch,” Jones also said of deciding goal.
Jones will undoubtedly face further scrutiny over his position with choruses of boos ringing around St Mary’s at the final whistle and supporters aiming a chant of “get out of our club” at the beleaguered Welshman for the second time in a week.
“Fortunately the players show that they have a big heart and a lot of fight,” opposite number Lopetegui concluded.
Jones: I didn’t want to show disrespect
Southampton manager Nathan Jones:
“Tough afternoon. For 60 minutes we were excellent – the best we’ve played at home. We had to go after the second goal. We did. If we make it two we go on to win the game. We settled for a sucker punch. We lost control second half. They scored using the ounce of quality needed to get the second goal.
“You are always susceptible to counter-attacks [against Wolves] because they’ve got pace and quality. We’ve got to deal with situations far better. We had enough situations to score again.
“It was more what we want to be. We were aggressive, we did have territory. We had our tails up and were front-footed. We did lose an ounce of intensity. We’ve got to get that second goal.
Speaking about heading straight down the tunnel at the full-time whistle, he added: “I’ve never done that before – 390 games I’ve not done that. But I’m not sure going around clapping would have showed respect, so that’s why I did that.”
Southampton are on the road next weekend with a visit to Chelsea on Saturday; kick-off 3pm.
Wolves look to make it three home wins on the spin as Bournemouth are in town also on Saturday; kick-off 3pm.