New pairing Franco Di Santo and Arouna Kone both got on the score sheet, as the Latics secured their first victory of the new season at St Mary’s on Saturday afternoon.
In what the first ever league meeting of the two sides, Roberto Martinez’s men put on a fantastic performance to spoil the party for home side, on what was their first home game on their return to the top flight.
|Franco Di Santo|
The home side were the brighter team during the opening phases, but unlike last week the Latics were determined to weather the storm and held firm.
The first chance of the game fell to the impressive Adam Lallana, his effort was fantastically tipped onto the bar by Ali Al Habsi. The Latics stopper was bright all afternoon, and will have been delighted with his first clean sheet of the season.
Captain Gary Caldwell was on hand when he put in an impressive last ditch challenge when Lallana was really to pull the trigger.
The Latics upped the tempo at the start of the second half, and they took the lead, after Di Santo fired home smartly, following great play from the influential Shaun Maloney.
The opener seemed to drain the confidence from the home side, with the Latics midfield ensuring that the Saints were unable to get into any kind of rhythm.
On his full debut Kone wrapped up all three points, the Ivorian international dispossessed Jose Fonte and ran the length of the pitch to finish off emphatically.
The victory will serve as the perfect tonic for
and his men who were made to pay last week for a poor start to the Chelsea
game. With many pundits doubting their ability to cope without the now departed
Victor Moses, the Spaniard was delighted with his side's effort:
“The whole team took massive responsibility after losing Moses. I am very, very satisfied because we knew how difficult it would be.”
Next up for the Latics is a midweek trip to
, in the newly named Capital
One Cup. Nottingham
Forest Martinez is expected to
ring the changes with many of the fringe players expected to be given a run
out. In a game that is being televised live by Sky, Latics fans will be keen to
avoid an upset and will be keen to go on a cup run.