Southampton vs Newcastle United. Premier League.
St. Mary's StadiumAttendance31,016.
Match report and free highlights as Bruno Guimaraes scores brilliant goal on first start for Newcastle in 2-1 win over Southampton at St Mary's; Stuart Armstrong gave Saints lead before Chris Wood equalised with his first Newcastle strike; Eddie Howe's side 10 points above relegation zone
Thursday 10 March 2022 23:31, UK
Bruno Guimaraes scored a stunning goal on his first start for Newcastle as the Magpies extended their unbeaten run in the Premier League to nine matches with a 2-1 win over Southampton at St Mary's.
Making his first start since arriving from Lyon for £40m in January, Guimaraes' exquisite backheel volley (52) proved decisive in a game that went down to the wire.
After a quiet opening, the first half burst into life when Stuart Armstrong (25) headed Southampton deservedly in front moments after Armando Broja had blazed over.
James Ward-Prowse fed Kyle Walker-Peters on the left-hand side and the full-back's cross was headed back into the six-yard box by Mohamed Elyounoussi, where Armstrong was on hand to bundle the ball over the line with the help of a deflection off Dan Burn.
Southampton: Forster (6), Livramento (6), Bednarek (6), Salisu (6), Walker-Peters (6), S Armstrong (7), Ward-Prowse (7), Romeu (7), Elyounoussi (6), Adams (7), Broja (6).
Subs: A Armstrong (n/a), Long (n/a), Djenepo (n/a).
Newcastle: Dubravka (7), Krafth (6), Schar (6), Burn (8), Targett (7), Shelvey (7), Guimaraes (8), Willock (6), Fraser (6), Murphy (6), Wood (7).
Subs: Longstaff (n/a), Manquillo (n/a), Almiron (n/a).
Man of the match: Bruno Guimaraes.
Seven minutes later, though, and Newcastle were level through Chris Wood (32). The striker lost his marker Mohammed Salisu and rose highest to connect with an inswinging Jonjo Shelvey cross, sending a powerful header past Fraser Forster for his first goal for the club since arriving from Burnley. It ended a goal drought of 14 games, his longest in more than six years.
The hosts responded well before the break as Che Adams' thunderous strike cannoned back off the bar, but the second half belonged to one man.
On 52 minutes, Matt Targett's corner found Burn at the far post. The centre-back headed back into a dangerous area, where Guimaraes was on hand to expertly backheel the ball beyond a helpless Forster. It was a classy performance from the Brazilian before his substitution on 66 minutes, when he deservedly received a standing ovation from the away fans.
Southampton pushed for an equaliser but Salisu and Armstrong's late efforts were expertly saved by Martin Dubravka as the visitors held on. The result extends Newcastle's unbeaten run in the Premier League to nine matches and moves them 10 points clear of the relegation zone. Southampton slip to 10th after their 10-game unbeaten home league run came to an end.
Newcastle head coach Eddie Howe hailed his side's team spirit and togetherness and praised Guimaraes for seizing his chance on his first start for the club.
"We were very dogged and determined and disciplined in our defensive shape," he told Sky Sports.
"Martin [Dubravka] made a couple of really good saves and even at the end the lads were throwing themselves in the way of the ball to stop a goal.
"The team spirit is second to none and you need that on nights like this."
On Guimaraes, who was serenaded by the travelling fans throughout, he added: "That relationship with players and supporters is so important and the Newcastle supporters have made the new guys feel very, very welcome.
"They've got a really good relationship with Bruno and it's only going to help if he produces moments like that on a regular basis.
"It was a brilliant finish from a player who has got outstanding attributes and I was really pleased for him tonight.
"I've said all along there's no doubting his quality, he's an outstanding player, but the team has worked very well and I've been reluctant to change it.
"But he took his chance today and played very well."
Newcastle striker Chris Wood expressed his delight at scoring his first goal for the club and hailed Guimaraes' impact after he struck their winner at St Mary's.
He told Sky Sports: "It was a very tough, very hard-fought win. We knew they were a good side. They've been outstanding here on their home patch.
"It was going to take a lot to win and the character showed by the boys was outstanding. It's something we're trying to instil in this team for the future.
"It's nice to be off the mark. Now I can tick on and get more until the end of the season. But it's all about the boys in the dressing room. They worked hard and Jonjo's pinpoint ball made it a lot easier for me to score."
On Guimaraes, he added: "Bruno with a bit of Brazilian flair to bring into the team! It's unbelievable for him. His first start for the club and he's already a fan favourite which is fantastic to see because he's got a lot to give us."
Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhuttl felt his side were unfortunate not to take anything from the game, telling Sky Sports: "It wasn't a bad game from us but not a successful one and that is frustrating, definitely.
"I don't like to use stats very often but I think we had 11 shots inside the box today and had very good opportunities, while they only had four or five. That shows you how often we created things.
"They defended quite well and were always a threat with long balls, high balls and set pieces.
"That is a way you can win games, for sure, and today they did it. We lost a game that we didn't need to lose.
"The difference at the moment is that we don't score from our chances as often as we could and Premier League games are decided by small margins."
He added: "At the moment, we don't give away a lot but we concede too many goals and that's a little bit too easy at the moment. This is what we have to stop because it makes it tough to win games."
Sky Sports' Dan Sansom at St Mary's:
There's a new star on Tyneside. His name is Bruno Guimaraes.
On his first start for Newcastle since arriving from Lyon for £40m in January, the Brazilian impressed during his side's 2-1 win over Southampton and capped a classy performance with an exquisite second-half goal, which proved to be the winner at St Mary's.
Replacing Joelinton in Eddie Howe's starting XI, the 24-year-old proved exactly why Newcastle made him their most expensive signing so far under new ownership and on this showing, he could soon become their main man.
He looked fearless from the start against a Southampton side who previously hadn't lost at home in the Premier League for 10 matches and, although Newcastle were already on an eight-game unbeaten run before this game, his flair and creativity gave them a different dimension.
Guimaraes was serenaded by the away fans throughout and received a standing ovation when he was brought off on 66 minutes. If this performance is anything to go by, Newcastle have found themselves a new hero.
Southampton host relegation-threatened Watford in the Premier League on Sunday; kick-off 2pm. Up next for Newcastle is a trip to Chelsea on the same day, live on Sky Sports; kick-off also 2pm.