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MATCH REPORT

PUBLISHED
16:57 28th December 2010

SOUTHAMPTON 4 HUDDESFIELD TOWN 1

Despite a promising start to the game that was capped with Lee Novak giving his side the lead, hosts Southampton ran out as comfortable winners in Town's final away game of 2010.

Novak netted his second goal of the season through a deft header to give Lee Clark's side the lead within a quarter of an hour following an impressive start, but goals from Rickie Lambert, Alex Chamberlin, Radhi Jaidi and substitute Richard Chaplow ensured the points stayed at St. Mary's.

Lee Clark made a few changes to his starting eleven following the Boxing Day defeat to Hartlepool. Most notably Tom Clarke completed his return from long-term injury to add some steel to the heart of the Town midfield, whereas the strike partnership of big Alan Lee and Lee Novak were tasked with battling against the experienced Saints centre back pairing of Jose Fonte and Radhi Jaidi.

The game started evenly, with both sides playing some decent stuff. However, Town created some very clear chances. Alan Lee, restored to the side in place of Jordan Rhodes, headed an Anthony Pilkington cross wide of goal before midfielder Scott Arfield managed to miss the target when Lee Novak pulled the ball back to him in the area in the 14th minute.

GOAL - Lee Novak netted his second goal of the season on his first start back from injury to put Town into the lead on the quarter hour mark. Town were awarded a free-kick when Radhi Jaidi fouled Alan Lee, which Tom Clarke delivered into the area; Roberts helped the ball on for Novak to advance and nod past the home custodian.

GOAL - Rickie Lambert equalised for the home side on 28 minutes through a superbly clean strike of the football. Dan Harding took a quick throw down by the left corner flag to find his striker on the edge of the area before turning and powering a brilliant strike inside Smithies and the near post.

SUB - Town were forced into a change on the half hour mark, with Liam Ridehalgh replacing an apparently injured Graham Carey at left back.

GOAL - Southampton then took the lead in the 32nd minute. Midfielder Dean Hammond put the ball in from the right hand side for Alex Chamberlain, who turned to make himself space inside the area and picked his spot past Smithies' left side.

BOOKING - Saints midfielder Morgan Schneiderlin was shown the first yellow card of the game in the 38th minute for a foul on Anthony Pilkington.

The Saints were in the ascendancy still as half-time approached and the lively Lallana struck the bar with a vicious shot when well positioned inside the area before forcing Smithies into a smart save to his left side with four minutes of the half remaining.

However, the Terriers still looked dangerous going forward and when Pilkington set the overlapping Peltier into space, Saints 'keeper Davis was forced to tip his dangerous cross over his own bar.

HALF-TIME: SOUTHAMPTON 2 HUDDERSFIELD TOWN 1

SUB - Nigel Adkins made a substitution during the interval with Frazer Richardson replacing Danny Butterfield.

Saints were right back on the attack as the second half commenced, with Smithies having to push Lambert's deflected long range strike around his left-hand post inside the opening two minutes.

The Terriers responded well and good link-up between Novak and Arfield ended with the former Falkirk powering a long range shot over the bar in the 49th minute.

A minute later the ball was at the other end of the pitch, but Antony Kay was on hand to pull off a vital block as forward Guly do Prado looked to pull the trigger inside the Town area.

SUB - Gary Roberts was shown a yellow card a minute later after a crude challenge on winger Chamberlin.

GOAL - Southampton extended their lead through a set-piece in the 50th minute, with former Birmingham City centre half Radhi Jaidi powering home an unstoppable near post header from Hammond's right wing delivery.

Town tried to fight back, but the best they could immediately muster was a wild shot over the bar from Kay after a Pilkington corner had only been half-cleared.

SUB - Southampton introduced Richard Chaplow to the game in the 56th minute; he replaced Schneiderlin.

SUB - Lee Clark made his own change in the 58th minute, with Arsenal loanee Benik Afobe replacing Lee.

A positive run forward from the impressive Lallana upon the restart resulted in a clear shooting opportunity for Hammond, but once again Smithies was equal to the effort - pushing the ball around his post for a corner.

BOOKING - Antony Kay was shown a yellow card on the hour mark for a late challenge on Rickie Lambert by the touchline.

Tom Clarke soon had a shot blocked in a crowded Saints area after another attacking run from Gary Roberts as Town probed for a way back into the game.

Lallana had another shot saved by Smithies in the 66th minute after the younger Clarke brother badly misplaced a pass inside his own half.

SUB - Town made their final throw of the dice in the 70th minute, with Joey Gudjonsson replacing Tom Clarke.

SUB - Saints soon made a change of their own, with Ryan Dickson coming on for Chamberlin a minute later.

GOAL - Almost immediately upon the restart the Saints extended their lead through substitute Richard Chaplow. The home midfielder outmuscled Joey Gudjonsson as the ball was fired in from the right side before cleverly peeling off and collecting the return from Lambert; he steadied himself on the edge of the area before firing an unstoppable low shot into the bottom right corner of Alex Smithies' goal.

BOOKING - Goalscorer Chaplow was booked in the 78th minute after committing a number of fouls in a short space of time.

Anthony Pilkington surprised home 'keeper Davis with a powerful long range drive after cutting infield from the right flank a minute later, but after the goalie had deflected the ball back out into his six yard box with his shins the impressive Fonte managed to clear the ball to safety as Lee Novak looked to pounce.

FULL-TIME: SOUTHAMPTON 4 HUDDERSFIELD TOWN 1

Town's team (4-4-2):

Alex Smithies; Graham Carey (Liam Ridehalgh 30), Peter Clarke (c), Antony Kay, Lee Peltier; Gary Roberts, Scott Arfield, Tom Clarke (Joey Gudjonsson 70), Anthony Pilkington; Lee Novak, Alan Lee (Benik Afobe 58)

Unused Subs: Ian Bennett, Nathan Clarke, Jordan Rhodes, Chris Atkinson

Town Bookings: Gary Roberts (50), Antony Kay (61)

Southampton Bookings: Morgan Schneiderlin (38), Richard Chaplow (78)

Gate: 24,483

Town: 901

    Data provided by Press Association

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