REPORT: PEC Zwolle 0-4 Southampton

By SFC Media time Sat 23 Jul Club

Southampton made light work of PEC Zwolle, as Claude Puel’s men beat the Eredivisie side 4-0 in the first pre-season friendly of their trip to Holland.

A 14th-minute goal from Charlie Austin put Saints on their way, before a quick-fire double from Nathan Redmond just before the break put Puel’s men in complete control at half time.

Ten changes at the break somewhat disrupted Saints’ flow, but Puel will have been pleased with the efforts of Saints’ youngsters in the second period, especially with Pierre-Emile Højbjerg grabbed his first goal for the club from the penalty spot in the closing stages to complete the scoring.

Having only returned to training on Wednesday, Steven Davis, Shane Long, Ryan Bertrand and Fraser Forster were not involved against the Dutch outfit, while Dušan Tadić also missed out.

There was however a first start of pre-season for defender Maya Yoshida, while summer signing Redmond made his second start for Saints since his move from Norwich City.

Having opened the scoring in Saints’ first friendly of the summer, James Ward-Prowse almost repeated the feat inside the opening three minutes.

After Jordy Clasie had been fouled 25 yards from goal, Ward-Prowse’s curled free-kick was excellently saved by Kevin Begois in the PEC Zwolle goal.

The opening goal arrived just over ten minutes later. Oriol Romeu did well to win back possession before playing in Austin, who made no mistake from ten yards as he slipped the ball beyond Begois.

Saints were in control, but it took until a minute before the break for the second goal to arrive. When it did, it was an excellently worked team move, ending with Redmond grabbing his first goal for the club.

Matt Targett picked out Ward-Prowse’s forward run, with his flick finding Austin who teed up the onrushing Redmond to fire the ball low into the far corner.

Redmond’s second was all his own doing. It arrived two minutes later, as he cut inside from the right, beat two men and squeezed the ball into the corner of Begois’ net from just outside the box.

Paulo Gazzaniga, rarely tested in the first half, was the only man to return for the second period, as Puel made ten changes at the break.

Sam McQueen, playing at left-back again, was one of those introduced and he who almost added a fourth. His effort though was well saved by substitute goalkeeper Mickey van der Hart.

The hosts should have pulled one back with just over ten minutes remaining. A low ball into the box found an unmarked Ted van der Pavert five yards out, but the defender somehow managed to loop the ball over the crossbar.

Gazzaniga was then tested for the first time, as he kept substitute Ryan Thomas at bay following a defensive error from Saints.

It would be Saints who grabbed the game's fourth and final goal, however. Højbjerg netted his first goal for the club from the penalty spot after being fouled in the box, completing a positive evening's work for Puel's side in Holland.

Next up: FC Twente.

PEC Zwolle: Kevin Begois (Mickey van der Hart 46), Bram van Polen (c) (Bart Schenkeveld 68), Ted van de Pavert, Phillippe Sandler (Sander van Looy 63), Wout Brama, Youness Mokhtar (Kingsley Ehizibue 46), Anass Achahbar (Stefan Nijland 46), Queensy Menig (Ryan Jared Thomas 75), Mastour Hachim, Django Warmerdam (Tarik Evre 68), Mustafa Saymak (Athanasios Karagkounis 63).

Unused substitutes: Josef Kvida.

Southampton First XI: Paulo Gazzaniga, Cuco Martina, Maya Yoshida, Virgil van Dijk (c), Matt Targett, Oriol Romeu, Jordy Clasie, James Ward-Prowse, Jay Rodriguez, Nathan Redmond, Charlie Austin.

Southampton Second XI: Paulo Gazzaniga, Yan Valery, Jack Stephens, Alfie Jones, Sam McQueen, Pierre-Emile Højbjerg, Harrison Reed, Jake Hesketh (Jordan Turnbull 71), Lloyd Isgrove, Sam Gallagher, Olufela Olomola.

Unused substitutes: Harry Lewis (GK).

Goals: Austin (14), Redmond (44 & 45+1), Højbjerg (pen 88).

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