Southampton end Everton’s unbeaten start

Jannik Vestergaard and Everton’s Dominic Calvert-Lewin during their match on Sunday. Southampton ended Everton’s unbeaten start to the season. (Reuters)
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Updated 25 October 2020

Southampton end Everton’s unbeaten start

  • Goals from James Ward-Prowse and Che Adams seal a 2-0 win against the Premier League leaders

LONDON: Southampton ended Everton’s unbeaten start to the season as goals from James Ward-Prowse and Che Adams sealed a 2-0 win against the Premier League leaders on Sunday.

Everton had gone eight games without defeat in all competitions this term, but they paid the price for a lethargic display at St. Mary’s.

Carlo Ancelotti’s side fell behind to Ward-Prowse’s first-half goal and Adams doubled their lead before the interval.

Everton left-back Lucas Digne was sent off for a dangerous challenge on Kyle Walker-Peters in the second half despite his claims he tripped when he stood on the Southampton defender’s heel.

Without the suspended Richarlison and injured Seamus Coleman after the stormy Merseyside derby draw with Liverpool last weekend, Everton lacked the drive and quality that had been the hallmark of their strong start to the campaign.

They remain above champions Liverpool on goal difference after a result that should serve as a reality check.

Southampton have now only lost twice in 13 league matches and climbed within 3 points of first place.

An entertaining encounter got off to a fast start when Danny Ings picked out Ryan Bertrand and his pass found Nathan Redmond for a shot that whistled past the post.

Everton’s first serious threat came from Alex Iwobi as the former Arsenal winger forced a good stop from Alex McCarthy.

Gylfi Sigurdsson went even closer with a blistering 20-yard drive that cannoned off the crossbar with McCarthy grasping at thin air.

Jordan Pickford was in action for the first time since his ugly tackle on Virgil van Dijk left the Liverpool defender with a serious knee injury.

Pickford had been subjected to vicious abuse on social media, but Ancelotti refused to take the error-prone keeper out of the spotlight.

Pickford made a good save to deny Oriol Romeu’s blast, but the England international had no chance when Ward-Prowse put Southampton ahead in the 27th minute.

Ward-Prowse passed into Ings, who returned the ball to the midfielder, who took one touch before firing into the far corner for his first goal of the season.

Adams doubled Southampton’s lead eight minutes later when Ings’ rampaged past Ben Godfrey and Yerry Mina before lofting a cross to his strike partner, whose shot deflected off Sigurdsson on its way past Pickford.

Southampton were in complete control. Stuart Armstrong had a strike disallowed for offside just before half time.

Everton had never won a Premier League game when they trailed by two or more goals at half time.

The visitors were marginally better in the second half, but James Rodriguez wasn’t having his usual influence on Everton’s play and their attacking threat was neutered.

Ings almost made it three from Armstrong’s cross, but couldn’t make strong enough contact.

Everton’s last hope vanished in the 72nd minute when Digne was dismissed for his awkward foul on Walker-Peters.

Scottish Premiership

Meanwhile, in the Scottish league, Celtic manager Neil Lennon said referee Willie Collum had had a “very poor game” after the champions were denied victory by Lewis Ferguson’s added-on time penalty in a dramatic 3-3 draw at Aberdeen on Sunday.

Celtic, who came into the match on the back of successive defeats after a 2-0 loss to arch-rivals Rangers was followed by a 3-1 Europa League reverse against Serie A leaders AC Milan, twice came from behind only to be denied in stoppage time by the Dons.

A share of the spoils at Pittodrie left Lennon’s side 3 points behind leaders Rangers, who could go six clear if they beat Livingston later on Sunday.


Yamaha’s Van Beveren leads impressive entries for Hail Bajas

Updated 7 min 45 sec ago

Yamaha’s Van Beveren leads impressive entries for Hail Bajas

  • 31 motorcycles and 21 quads are participating in the FIM-sanctioned race
  • The event is being organized by the Saudi Automobile and Motorcycle Federation

JEDDAH: Yamaha’s official factory rider Adrien Van Beveren leads impressive entries in the motorcycle and quad categories for the forthcoming two Bajas in Hail that will run from Dec. 10-12 and Dec. 14-16.

The Frenchman is registered in the entry list that stands at 31 motorcycles and 21 quads for the FIM-sanctioned event being organized by the Saudi Automobile and Motorcycle Federation. It gives competitors the perfect opportunity to test their navigational techniques before the Dakar Rally in January.

Rally officials will release the FIA car, truck and national category entries on Saturday.

Van Beveren is one of a talented crop of cross-country riders and has won stages on the Dakar Rally, leading the event in the past. He suffered a wrist injury last year, but is back to full fitness and finished second at the Andalucia Rally in southern Spain in October.

The Yamaha WR 450F rider will be using the back-to-back Bajas in Hail to finalize his preparations before the Japanese manufacturer goes up against the likes of KTM, Honda, Husqvarna, Sherco and Hero in the Dakar.

His main international rival could well be young rider Konrad Dabrowski at the helm of a KTM 450 Rally as part of the Duust Rally Team. The Pole is the son of former professional rider Marek Dabrowski, who spent the latter part of his career competing on FIA World Cup events on four wheels with the Overdrive Toyota team.

Saudi riders dominate both the bike and quad categories, but Ali Ashoor, Rashed Al-Hassan, Othman Al-Ghfeli and Rashid Abdullah represent the UAE in the two-wheel section, and Khalifa Al-Raeesi will tackle the event on a Honda TRX 450 ER quad. Kuwait will be represented by Mohammed Jaffar on his KTM.

Among the Saudi riders are several who have tackled the Hail International Rally in the past, including Mishal Al-Ghuneim (KTM), Sufyan Al-Omar (Honda) and Sultan Al-Masoud (Yamaha Raptor). Al-Omar and Al-Masoud finished second and third in their category behind Riyadh Al-Oraifan at the Hail International Rally in February 2020.

Baja Hail 1 will offer 592 km of competition in a route of 890 km through the Al-Nafud desert. Baja Hail 2 has a slightly shorter format, offering 479 km of competition in a route of 780 km.

Full details of coronavirus precautions and requirements for foreigners planning to attend the event are available on the website bajahail.com.

Both Hail Bajas will run under the supervision of the Hail Regional Development Authority, in co-operation with the General Authority for Tourism and National Heritage and the General Authority for Sport.