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BBC Sport's Stuart Hall
"Weak men believe in luck"
 real 14k

Man City boss Joe Royle
"Another smash and grab at Maine Road"
 real 56k

Saints' boss Glenn Hoddle
"The balance to our game is relatively good"
 real 56k

Southampton goalscorer Dan Petrescu
"You know, when you go on the pitch, what you have to do"
 real 56k

Saturday, 3 March, 2001, 17:18 GMT
Saints deepen City woes
Claus Lundekvam heads clear from Darren Huckerby
Claus Lundekvam heads clear from Darren Huckerby
Manchester City 0-1 Southampton

Dan Petrescu's spectacular strike secured Southampton's fourth successive Premiership victory and compounded Manchester City's relegation worries.

The Romanian international scored after 55 minutes as the in-form Saints rose to ninth in the table, just four points off a Champions League spot.

And their sixth successive clean sheet in the Premiership - they have not conceded a goal in over nine hours of league football - left City rooted third from bottom.

And Joe Royle's team have now lost nine matches at Maine Road.


It's not `Royle slams referee' but we should have had at least one penalty and I'm sure that the TV will confirm that, in fact I know it will because I've been told that
  Manchester City manager Joe Royle
The Saints rearguard immediately showed why it has been so parsimonious recently; capably dealing with a sprightly start from City.

The visitors eventually found their rhythm, and, but for James Beattie's mis-kick, they might have taken the lead after 12 minutes.

Beattie blow

Darren Huckerby continued to pose problems for Southampton. Shaun Goater met his cross after 14 minutes, but Paul Jones did well to save from point-blank range.

That set the tone for some open, attractive football. Huckerby and Andrei Kanchelskis looked lively for City, while the James Beattie/Richard Dunne confrontation was a fascinating diversion at the other end.

Paul Jones
Jones is unbeaten in over hours of league action
But the Southampton top scorer's involvement ended after half an hour when he was forced to retire hurt and was replaced by former City striker Uwe Rosler.

Despite the enterprising play, mostly from City, chances were at a premium, as both defences continued their fine recent form.

But Jones showed why he has now kept 10 clean sheets in 13 games with an excellent save from Huckerby's snapshot after 40 minutes.

And an identical stop three minutes later denied Danny Tiatto, who had fired in a ferocious free kick.


That was our 13th clean sheet of the season and that's a credit to everyone. We defended well from the front all the way back.
  Glenn Hoddle
But Southampton finshed the opening half strongly only for Rosler to squander two good chances.

After a subdued start to the second half, Southampton took the lead with the first chance of note after 55 minutes.

City failed to clear from a corner and Petrescu pivoted to steer an excellent volley into the net from close range.

City switches

Rosler was presented with an almost identical chance, but Rosler lacked Petrescu's technique and blazed well over.

Joe Royle responded to the goal with a double substitution: Laurent Charvet and former Saints striker Egil Ostenstad replacing Danny Granville and Huckerby.

City's increased accent on attack left them exposed at the back, but Southampton were unable to profit.


This is the second game running in which we have lost to a team who had only one chance. A 0-0 is the worst we should have got out of it. We're still in a situation that if we put two or three wins together we can get out of it.
  Joe Royle
Indeed, Ostenstad almost levelled after 68 minutes, but Jones got his fingertips to his shot and the ball rolled just wide of the post for a corner.

And the in-form keeper produced another splendid save to turn Gerard Wiekens' header behind minutes later.

City continued to press, but their play lacked coherence, with Southampton defending dutifully to hold on for another impressive win.


Man City: Weaver, Haaland, Dunne, Howey, Granville, Kanchelskis, Wiekens, Grant, Tiatto, Goater, Huckerby. Subs: Prior, Dickov, Nash, Ostenstad, Charvet.

Southampton: Jones, Lundekvam, Richards, El Khalej, Marsden, Oakley, Draper, Bridge, Petrescu, Kachloul, Beattie. Subs: Moss, Tessem, Rosler, Davies, Monk.

Referee: S Dunn (Bristol).

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