Southampton’s B team travel to the North East for the second time in three matches as they face Sunderland in Premier League 2 on Monday.
Sunderland vs Saints
Premier League 2
Academy of Light
Monday 7th November, 1:00pm GMT
Saints come into this fixture after a resounding 8-1 victory over Middlesbrough last week.
In slightly different circumstances, several first team players featured at Staplewood Campus to gain extra minutes or return from injuries; Sékou Mara scored four goals and Theo Walcott grabbed a hat-trick of his own, along with a goal for B team captain, Lewis Payne.
Head Coach, Dave Horseman, was pleased that his youngsters involved could gain a “fantastic learning experience” alongside the senior stars, as the victory moved Saints up to third in the table.
Sunderland return to the Academy of Light after a dramatic 1-1 draw against fierce rivals Newcastle in the Tyne-Wear derby at St. James’ Park.
Trailing in the final minutes, goalkeeper Alex Bass incredibly scored a stoppage-time equaliser to level the scores in dramatic fashion.
The draw means the Black Cats are unbeaten in two games as they saw off Stoke City with a 3-2 win the week prior. However, they had previously gone five games without a victory, stretching all the way back to August.
Last time out, a solitary goal from Thierry Small was the difference in a 1-0 win for Saints in the final game of 2021/22 season.
At St Mary’s Stadium, Small swept the ball home from inside the area in the 79th minute to ensure a winning end to the season and consolidate a 7th place finish.
“It’s a big one this weekend so we may be changed again, as the Under-18s have a great chance to progress in their Premier League Cup.” Horseman admitted after last week’s win.
“I would expect a lot of our Under-18s that usually play in the B team to play on Saturday, so it gives us a chance to look at some other boys on Monday.
“Sunderland have been playing some of their bench players as well so it may be roles reversed for us [from the Middlesbrough fixture].
“We’ve got a lot of character and determination in the way we play, and that allows us to take games to senior opposition which will be a positive for us.”