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Friday, 28 September, 2001, 07:10 GMT 08:10 UK
Beattie makes Boro pay
Brian Deane and Chris Marsden
Brian Deane (left) could not get past the Saints defence
Middlesbrough 1-3 Southampton

James Beattie was the difference between the teams as Southampton hauled themselves off the foot of the table at The Riverside.

Marian Pahars set up the Saints striker for the opening goal in the 66th minute and the Latvian put the Saints two clear from the penalty spot five minutes later.

Boro pushed forward and were back in the game as quickly as the 74th minute when Alen Boksic fired home a penalty.

But as the home side pressed for the equaliser, Beattie took advantage with a stunning strike in the 84th minute to give Southampton a vital three points.


Southampton had been playing well, it's just that they hadn't got the results or taken their chances - today they took those chances and deserved the win
Middlesbrough manager Steve McClaren
In a lacklustre first half Southampton packed the midfield and frustrated Boro, with Beattie missing the only chance of note when he fired over from close range.

An hour had passed before the game sprang to life, with Boro coming out after the break in determined fashion.

Boksic sent a free-kick just over the bar in the 55th minute before Jonathan Greening made a superb run from deep that almost set up the Croatian.

Five minutes later Boro almost went ahead when the impressive Allan Johnston crossed for Brian Deane, who headed against the bar.


The one thing I have to say is that the players are a wonderful bunch to work with because they work terrifically hard on a daily basis
Southampton coach Mick Wadsworth
A goal looked inevitable, but it was a surprise when it came at the other end.

Pahars found space on the right and his cross left Beattie with a simple header from six yards.

When Pahars converted the spot kick after being hauled down by Curtis Fleming soon after, the game looked beyond Boro.

But substitute Szilard Nemeth made an instant impact by racing into the box and past Jones, who brought the Slovakian down.

There was never any doubt that Boksic would score from the spot and with 18 minutes remaining, an equaliser looked possible.

Again Southampton struck as Boro were taking control. Stuart Ripley found Beattie on the edge of the penalty area and he finished clinically to complete a miserable afternoon for the home side.


Middlesbrough: Schwarzer, Cooper, Ehiogu, Southgate, Fleming, Johnston, Mustoe, Wilson, Greening, Boksic, Deane. Subs: Nemeth, Okon, Marinelli, Crossley, Gavin.

Southampton: Jones, Bridge, El Khalej, Lundekvam, Delap, Svensson, Oakley, Marsden, Davies, Beattie, Pahars. Subs: Moss, Ripley, Benali, Draper, McDonald.

Referee: A Wiley (Burntwood)

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BBC Sport's Alan Biggs
"Boro proved a soft touch"
Southampton coach Mick Wadsworth
"The performance was excellent"
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