2015/16 Season Review: September

By SFC Media time Tue 31 May Club

We take a look back at another record-breaking campaign for Southampton by looking at how Ronald Koeman's men fared in the month of September.

The transfer window came to a close at the start of the month, with Saints landing the signing of Dutch defender Virgil van Dijk before the internationals schedule halted Premier League fixtures for a week.

Saints returned to action with a trip to the midlands for their first match of September where Van Dijk made his debut for the club.

Saturday 12th September: West Bromwich Albion 0-0 Southampton

Saints continued their unbeaten start away from home in the league with another clean sheet, but although Ronald Koeman’s men had the better of the play at the Hawthorns, they struggled to carve out concrete chances.

Jay Rodriguez had the best opportunity of a closely-fought but generally forgettable contest, sending a diving header just wide towards the end of the first half, while both sides had decent-looking penalty appeals turned down.

Graziano Pellè saw a scuffed effort saved as the encounter threatened to peter out, while Sadio Mané had an injury-time effort blocked after some neat play on the edge of the Albion box.

Sunday 20th September: Southampton 2-3 Manchester United

Graziano Pellè struck twice, but Manchester United recovered from going a goal down to take all three points in a five goal game at St Mary’s.

Pellè’s fifth strike of the season put Saints ahead after 13 minutes, but two goals from United’s new striker Anthony Martial either side of the break put the visitors in front.

Louis van Gaal’s men looked to have sealed their win on 68 minutes when Juan Mata fired home from a rebound after Memphis Depay’s shot came back off the post.  However, Pellè struck again on 86 minutes to set up a tense finale.

Victor Wanyama forced David De Gea into a fingertip save from distance, before José Fonte saw a header cleared from the line, but it was too little, too late from the hosts as United toasted their 23rd Premier League success over Southampton.

Wednesday 23rd September: MK Dons 0-6 Southampton

Southampton equalled their biggest post-war away win to ease into the fourth round of the Capital One Cup with a 6-0 victory at Championship side MK Dons.

The tie was effectively over inside ten minutes, with Jay Rodriguez’s delightful fifth-minute opener being followed up by Sadio Mané’s well-taken chip.

The Senegalese made it three before the half-hour mark, with Jay Rodriguez adding another from the spot soon after the restart.

Shane Long, who had a hand in Saints’ third and fourth goals, then duly grabbed a brace of his own in the space of nine second-half minutes.

The victory is Saints’ biggest since they beat Oldham Athletic by the same scoreline in January 2011, and marks only the fourth occasion on which the side has scored six goals away from home since the war.

Saturday 26th September: Southampton 3-1 Swansea City

A first Southampton goal for Virgil van Dijk was followed up by second half strikes from Dušan Tadić and Sadio Mané as Saints blew the Swans away with a confident performance, long before Gylfi Sigurdsson reduced arrears from the penalty spot late in the game.

Matches between Saints and Swansea have been close affairs in recent times, so the first goal always seemed pivotal in this meeting, and it arrived on 11 minutes from centre-back Van Dijk, who powered in to meet Ward-Prowse’s corner to give the hosts a vital lead.

Koeman’s men ended the prospect of a nerve shredding second 45 when Tadić got his third league goal of the season with a neat close range finish.

Mané made it 3-0 with an excellent drive from the edge of the area, but the clean sheet was lost on 83 minutes when José Fonte’s foul on Neil Taylor inside the area led to a spot-kick which Sigurdsson converted for 3-1.

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