Brentford vs Southampton. Premier League.
Gtech Community StadiumAttendance17,051.
Report and free match highlights as Brentford move into the top seven with a 3-0 win over bottom club Southampton; Ben Mee and Bryan Mbeumo score quickfire goals in three first-half minutes; Saints fans sing: "You don't know what you're doing" at manager Nathan Jones.
Sunday 5 February 2023 10:03, UK
Southampton fans told Nathan Jones to "get out of our club" as his side were beaten 3-0 at Brentford, who moved into the top seven and extended their unbeaten run in the Premier League to nine games.
Two goals in three minutes at the end of the first half put Thomas Frank's side in the commanding position they deserved.
Ben Mee headed Bryan Mbeumo's cross high into the net from a short corner (41), before the latter finished a brilliant breakaway past Gavin Bazunu in the next attack (44). Mathias Jensen put gloss on the scoreline by heading in a late third from Rico Henry's cross (79).
Southampton brought on new signings Kamaldeen Sulemana and Paul Onuachu at half-time and did create chances after the break, but the visiting fans were left unimpressed by Jones' tactics with regular angry chanting directed at their own coach.
The songs from the visiting fans included "You're getting sacked in the morning" and "You don't know what you're doing".
Jones said he understood the anger from the Southampton fans and admitted in the post-match press conference: "I can be better.
"The fans saw our performance today and it justified those sayings. That's fine. All I can say is: I understand, I totally understand.
"They've sung that at any point when I've made a substitution. If I had kept Romeo Lavia on with a booking, they were a counter-attacking side, we were at risk.
"Was he running the game, outbattling and dominating? Was it justified? If it wasn't, they were watching a different game to me. They're entitled to that opinion and no problem.
"I have broad shoulders, I will take everything on myself. At the end of the day, I only look at myself in the mirror and say am I the best I can be? To be honest, I can be better."
The match started in frantic fashion as Brentford held all the possession, with Southampton posing some real threat on the break - but the final ball let them down.
The hosts created most clear-cut chance of the match when Ivan Toney clipped a ball over Southampton's defence to Wissa, who rounded Gavin Bazunu but could only smack his finish off the crossbar.
At the other end, Salisu's long ball forward released James Ward-Prowse in the penalty area but his cross-cum-shot flew wide of the far post.
Toney and Mbeumo both saw half-chances in the box blocked and fly wide respectively, but eventually Brentford's pressure led to the net finally bustling.
The Bees played a short corner with Mbuemo's right-footed cross finding the onrushing Mee in the box, leaving the centre-back to arrow a header into the top corner whilst also clashing heads with Salisu.
After Mee received treatment, Brentford went straight up and scored a second. The brilliant Mbeumo and Dasilva combined on the right, with the latter releasing Wissa on the left with a superb outside-of-the-boot pass.
Wissa squared to Mbeumo who had the simplest of finishes past Bazunu for two goals in four minutes.
Southampton boss Jones responded at half-time by bringing on new signings Sulemana and Onuachu to bolster the front line, with former showing good feet before testing David Raya's gloves with a simple effort from distance.
That prompted the angry visiting Saints fans, who also booed their team off at the interval, to start sarcastically singing: "We've had a shot!"
Brentford: Raya (6); Hickey (6), Pinnock (7), Mee (8), Henry (7); Jensen (7), Norgaard (7), Dasilva (8); Mbeumo (9), Toney (6), Wissa (7)
Subs: Roerslev (6), Janelt (6), Schade (7), Zanka (n/a), Damsgaard (n/a)
Southampton: Bazunu (6); Bree (5), Bednarek (5), Salisu (5), Perraud (4); Lavia (6), Diallo (5), Ward-Prowse (5); Edozie (6), Adams (6), Elyounoussi (5)
Subs: Onuachu (6), Sulemana (7), Alcaraz (6), Walcott (7), A.Armstrong (n/a)
Player of the match: Bryan Mbeumo (Brentford)
Brentford tried to build on their lead as Mee flashed a header wide from Dasilva's cross, while Toney saw a close-range shot cleared off the line by Salisu following Mbuemo's quick free-kick.
Southampton also had an effort cleared off the line as substitute Theo Walcott was denied by Ethan Pinnock at a corner, while the same Saints man also saw a one-on-one with Raya blocked before Che Adams headed the rebound wide.
But it would be Brentford who would get the decisive third goal as January signing Kevin Schade teed up Henry, who whipped in for Jensen to nod in from close range.
Southampton fans headed for the exit and those who remained sang more anti-Jones chants.
Southampton manager Jones said he has "compromised" on what has made him "successful" in the past - but says he will not allow that to happen anymore.
"I've been really successful playing a real fluid style and then tried to implement that at Stoke but it didn't [work] because of certain things," he said. "Then I came back to Luton to a real, aggressive, front-footed side. There weren't many around Europe in terms of aggression and clean sheets, defending the box, balls in the box, xG - all those things.
"We were pound-for-pound the best because we were spending next to nothing and producing so much. And I've gone away from that.
"Maybe it's because of the Premier League or how things look - players, internationals and stuff like that. I've had to compromise certain things and I'm not going to do that again."
When asked to pinpoint Southampton's problems, Jones added: "The same things have been happening for a year, are still happening. They've been losing games in the Premier League and conceding goals not defending the box well enough, not scoring enough goals and it's been exactly the same.
"We were brought in to do something different because with a shoestring budget [at Luton], we were scoring, defending the box well, out-pressing teams and finishing. We were doing the basics so well. That's why I was recruited - to transfer that into the football club. I haven't at the minute. That will change."
Asked if he will have the time at Southampton to implement those changes, he said: "I don't know. It's not a question for me. I hope so.
"I look at that team and I don't see myself in that team. That's the biggest thing, that's going to change."
Meanwhile, Brentford manager Frank says was delighted to see his side rise to seventh in the table but insists he is not looking too far ahead.
"I know we're unbeaten in nine. I'm pleased we are seventh. But we know it's only a snapshot. The big snapshot is after 38 games.
"It's interesting where we are. But so far we have performed well and I'm pleased we are on this run of form where almost every player out there is in a fantastic place.
"I just said to my players: We can never take it for granted that we are winning in the Premier League."
Brentford's nine-game unbeaten run in the league will come under threat when his side go to Arsenal next week, but the Danish boss is confident they can provide an upset.
"We are in a good place. We believe we can go there and win. I think if we are not on it, we can lose 4-0 to Arsenal at the Emirates. They've been fantastic.
"At the Emirates they have performed so well, the tempo and the intensity they're playing with. The quality is different class.
"They are the best-performing team in the Premier League. We can go there and do something. We need to perform the best performance we have done, maybe in total in the Premier League, to beat them."
Brentford travel to league leaders Arsenal on Saturday February 11; kick-off 3pm. That is the first of back-to-back London derbies for the Bees, with Crystal Palace then heading to the Gtech Community Stadium on Saturday February 18; kick-off 3pm.
Southampton host resurgent Wolves at St Mary's on February 11; kick-off 3pm. They then return to London to face Chelsea a week later on Saturday February 18; kick-off 3pm.