Ward-Prowse beats familiar foe to earn Southampton vital point

18 Mar 2023
Southampton FC v Tottenham Hotspur - Premier League

Midfielder's late penalty beats ex-neighbour Fraser Forster in Saints' comeback draw v Spurs

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A stoppage-time penalty from James Ward-Prowse earned bottom club Southampton a precious point as they fought back from two goals down to draw 3-3 with Tottenham Hotspur, for whom Harry Kane equalled a Premier League record.

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In the last minute of normal time, with Spurs winning 3-2, Pape Sarr fouled fellow substitute Ainsley Maitland-Niles to give Southampton a penalty.

Not only had Ward-Prowse missed his previous two spot-kicks this season, he was also facing a familiar foe in former team-mate Fraser Forster, the Spurs goalkeeper who had saved a penalty in his previous match.

“I know Fraser very well,” said Ward-Prowse. “He used to be my next-door neighbour and I have been taking a few penalties against him in my garden with my little boy, so we have got a little thing going on, but I managed to put it away.”

Southampton FC v Tottenham Hotspur - James Ward-Prowse beats Fraser Forster from the penalty spot

Pedro Porro had put Spurs ahead in first-half stoppage time with his first goal for the club. But soon after the break Che Adams poked in from Theo Walcott’s cross to pull Saints level.

Kane’s 21st goal of the season restored Spurs’ lead, with the striker scoring his ninth headed goal of the campaign, equalling Duncan Ferguson’s single-season record for Everton in 1997/98.

Ivan Perisic emulated his fellow wing-back Porro by scoring his first goal for Spurs, seemingly sealing the points that would have sent the north Londoners above Manchester United into third position.

But Walcott’s close-range finish made it 3-2 and put Southampton in a position to rescue a point, which they did through Ward-Prowse.

It was not enough to lift Saints off the bottom of the table but it does reduce the gap to 17th to two points, and there are only four points between them and 12th-placed Crystal Palace.

Spurs remain fourth on 49 points but have played two matches more than the teams around them.

Leeds stun Wolves

Leeds United jumped five places from 19th to 14th with a thrilling 4-2 win at Wolverhampton Wanderers.

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Jack Harrison swept in from Wilfried Gnonto’s cross in the sixth minute to put the visitors ahead at Molineux.

Wolves dominated but it was Leeds who doubled their lead shortly after half-time when an unmarked Luke Ayling stole in at the far post to head in from a corner for his first goal since scoring the winner in this very fixture exactly a year ago.

Just 26 seconds after coming as a substitute, Rasmus Kristensen added Leeds’ third.

Jonny’s brilliant 40-yard volley beat a stranded Illan Meslier to make it 3-1 before Matheus Cunha’s deflected shot reduced the deficit to one goal.

But a straight red card for Jonny for serious foul play hit Wolves’ hopes of a comeback, and Rodrigo came on to seal a second win for Leeds under Javi Gracia to give them 26 points.

That is a point and a place behind Wolves, for whom Matheus Nunes was shown a red card on the bench for his protests against Rodrigo’s goal.

Fight to avoid relegation

Position Pos Club Played Pl GD Points Pts
12 Chelsea CHE 38 -9 44
13 Wolverhampton Wanderers WOL 38 -27 41
14 West Ham United WHU 38 -13 40
15 Bournemouth BOU 38 -34 39
16 Nottingham Forest NFO 38 -30 38
17 Everton EVE 38 -23 36
18 Leicester City LEI 38 -17 34
19 Leeds United LEE 38 -30 31
20 Southampton SOU 38 -37 25
Full table
Foxes stop the rot

Leicester City ended a four-match losing streak with a hard-earned 1-1 draw at Brentford, whose European hopes were hit.

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Mathias Jensen put Brentford ahead with a shot that beat Daniel Iversen in the Leicester goal thanks to two deflections. But Harvey Barnes equalised from James Maddison’s exquisite through-ball before Brentford’s Shandon Baptiste received a second booking late on.

A point still means Leicester drop to 17th with 25 points, one above the bottom three, while Brentford, who missed the chance to go sixth, remain eighth on 42 points.

Simms stops Chelsea winning streak

A first Premier League goal for Ellis Simms stopped Chelsea from making it three wins in a row for Graham Potter as they were held to a 2-2 draw by Everton.

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Joao Felix, with his first home goal for Chelsea, had put the home side ahead seven minutes after half-time.

Abdoulaye Doucoure headed in the equaliser from a corner on 69 minutes for Everton’s first goal in London in five league matches.

The scores were not level for long as Kai Havertz restored Chelsea’s lead from the penalty spot after Reece James had been brought down by a combination of Ben Godfrey and James Tarkowski.

Simms was brought on for an equaliser and, 10 minutes later, he delivered, brushing past Kalidou Koulibaly in the 88th minute to finish low through Kepa Arrizabalaga.

The point keeps Everton in 15th on 26 points. Chelsea are 10th, on 39 points, three off the top six.

Villa stretch their run

Aston Villa extended their unbeaten run to four matches with a 3-0 win over AFC Bournemouth.

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Douglas Luiz opened the scoring at Villa Park after Leon Bailey had shown good feet before cutting the ball back.

Philip Billing was denied an equaliser by an excellent Emiliano Martinez save before Jacob Ramsey doubled the lead with a skilful finish.

Emiliano Buendia confirmed the win with a close-range header.

Villa are 11th with 38 points, 14 more than AFC Bournemouth who have dropped to 19th.

Can Arsenal extend their lead?

There's only one match on Sunday, but it is a huge one as Arsenal take on Palace.

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The leaders have the opportunity to shake off their midweek UEFA Europa League exit at the hands of Sporting Lisbon after a penalty shootout and extend their lead at the top to eight points.

But they face a Palace side who have drawn twice in their last two matches at Emirates Stadium and are looking to end an 11-match winless run under the management of Paddy McCarthy after the dismissal of Patrick Vieira on Friday.

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