World Cup Qualifying

World Cup Qualifying slideshow

Peru's players celebrate after playing Colombia to a 1-1 draw during a World Cup qualifying soccer match against Colombia in Lima, Peru, Tuesday, Oct. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

Honduras' Alberth Elis (17) celebrates after his team Honduras' Romell Quioto scored against Mexico, during a World Cup qualifying soccer match in San Pedro Sula, Honduras, Tuesday, Oct. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Moises Castillo)

Syria's goal keeper Ibriham Alma, second left, is unable to stop the header from Australia's Tim Cahill, second right, from scoring during their Soccer World Cup qualifying match in Sydney, Australia, Tuesday, Oct. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Rick Rycroft)

Soccer Football - 2018 World Cup Qualifications - North, Central America & Caribbean - Trinidad and Tobago v United States

USA's Christian Pulisic and Michael Bradley hug during their World Cup qualifying match against Trinidad & Tobago. REUTERS/Andrea de Silva

Soccer Football - 2018 World Cup Qualifications - North, Central America & Caribbean - Trinidad and Tobago v United States

USA's Christian Pulisic and Michael Bradley hug during their World Cup qualifying match against Trinidad & Tobago. REUTERS/Andrea de Silva

Reyna on U.S. soccer: 'We're far too arrogant, far too obnoxious'

The former USMNT captain sounded off on what he sees as serious problems with American soccer in the wake of the recent World Cup qualifying disaster

Reyna on U.S. soccer: 'We're far too arrogant, far too obnoxious'

The former USMNT captain sounded off on what he sees as serious problems with American soccer in the wake of the recent World Cup qualifying disaster

Reyna on U.S. soccer: 'We're far too arrogant, far too obnoxious'

The former USMNT captain sounded off on what he sees as serious problems with American soccer in the wake of the recent World Cup qualifying disaster

Reyna on U.S. soccer: 'We're far too arrogant, far too obnoxious'

The former USMNT captain sounded off on what he sees as serious problems with American soccer in the wake of the recent World Cup qualifying disaster

Reyna on U.S. soccer: 'We're far too arrogant, far too obnoxious'

The former USMNT captain sounded off on what he sees as serious problems with American soccer in the wake of the recent World Cup qualifying disaster

Reyna on U.S. soccer: 'We're far too arrogant, far too obnoxious'

The former USMNT captain sounded off on what he sees as serious problems with American soccer in the wake of the recent World Cup qualifying disaster

Reyna on U.S. soccer: 'We're far too arrogant, far too obnoxious'

The former USMNT captain sounded off on what he sees as serious problems with American soccer in the wake of the recent World Cup qualifying disaster

Reyna on U.S. soccer: 'We're far too arrogant, far too obnoxious'

The former USMNT captain sounded off on what he sees as serious problems with American soccer in the wake of the recent World Cup qualifying disaster

Reyna on U.S. soccer: 'We're far too arrogant, far too obnoxious'

The former USMNT captain sounded off on what he sees as serious problems with American soccer in the wake of the recent World Cup qualifying disaster

Reyna on U.S. soccer: 'We're far too arrogant, far too obnoxious'

The former USMNT captain sounded off on what he sees as serious problems with American soccer in the wake of the recent World Cup qualifying disaster

Reyna on U.S. soccer: 'We're far too arrogant, far too obnoxious'

The former USMNT captain sounded off on what he sees as serious problems with American soccer in the wake of the recent World Cup qualifying disaster

Former U.S. Soccer Presidents, MLS GM Weigh in on Sunil Gulati's Role, Future

U.S. Soccer president Sunil Gulati is set to dig his heels in and run for re-election in February despite the U.S. men’s failure to qualify for the World Cup. But should Gulati run again?

Few respected soccer people in the U.S. are willing to speak on the record, but former U.S. Soccer presidents Alan Rothenberg and Bob Contiguglia and former Real Salt Lake owner and NBA GM Dave Checketts did speak for public consumption.

Rothenberg said: “Where matters stand now, I don’t see any better candidate even remotely extant. Therefore, [Gulati] should run. If somebody from the outside with tremendous credentials should appear, I might have to take a second look at it. And by the way, I think Sunil would, too. If he could keep his role on the 2026 World Cup and CONCACAF and FIFA, I think he’d be very happy. And running the World Cup would take a heck of a lot of time. But at the same time, it would have to be somebody who was clearly able to take the reins [of U.S. Soccer].”

Contiguglia said he thought Gulati had done a good job overall running the U.S. Soccer board and that he should continue.

Checketts, meanwhile, said: “I do feel that there will be someone who will emerge who has the ability to move the needle here. I think that Sunil should remain involved. I hope he does remain involved. But I would challenge him now to consider stepping aside so that someone else could give it a try. I think [U.S. Soccer] needs a different direction.”

UCL LIVE: Liverpool Routs Maribor; Man City Leads Napoli; Madrid, Spurs Level

The Champions League group stage hits its halfway point for half of the teams in the field on Tuesday, with Matchday 3 kicking off with a few scintillating matchups.

Real Madrid hosts Tottenham in a clash of Group H leaders, while Manchester City welcomes Napoli to the Etihad, where two of Europe's most prolific attacks will go head-to-head.

Elsewhere, Besiktas will look to continue its impressive run in the competition at Monaco, while Christian Pulisic aims to rebound from the USA's World Cup qualifying disappointment in Borussia Dortmund's match in Cyprus, where the Bundesliga power seeks its first points in the group at APOEL.

Here is the full slate for today's matches (all begin at 2:45 p.m. ET):

Spartak Moscow vs. Sevilla

Maribor vs. Liverpool

Manchester City vs. Napoli

Feyenoord vs. Shakhtar Donetsk

Monaco vs. Besiktas

RB Leipzig vs. Porto

Real Madrid vs. Tottenham

APOEL vs. Borussia Dortmund

Stay tuned here for live updates and highlights of goals and key plays (refresh for most recent updates).

LIVERPOOL SUPPLIES THE EXCLAMATION POINT

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Trent Alexander-Arnold put the finishing touches on Liverpool's thrashing of Maribor, scoring the Reds' sixth and seventh of the day to make it 7-0 in Slovenia. The result, coupled with Spartak Moscow's result vs. Sevilla, will shoot Liverpool to the top of the group.

NAPOLI PULLS ONE BACK

Given the gift of a second penalty, Napoli happily took advantage, with Amadou Diawara beating Ederson from the spot to make it 2-1 at the Etihad in the 73rd minute.

APOEL STUNS DORTMUND–FOR A MOMENT

Dortmund figured it'd get back on track in the Champions League at lowly APOEL, but the Cypriot side has other ideas. Mickael Pote's goal just after the hour mark put Dortmund stunningly behind 1-0 and in need of a change in fortune–and fast. That came from its captain, as Sokratis Papastathopoulos finished off a pass from Mario Gotze five minutes later to make it 1-1.

SPARTAK PULLS AWAY

Spartak Moscow took another lead on Sevilla after conceding the equalizer, with Lorenzo Melgarejo scoring the go-ahead goal off Quincy Promes's assist in the 58th minute. It extended that lead to 3-1 soon after, with Denis Glushakov doing the honors and coming up with the vital insurance goal.

Luiz Adriano netted the fourth in the 74th minute, making it 4-1 and adding to the Russian champions' statement, which comes on the heels of drawing Liverpool on Matchday 2.

LLORIS ROBS BENZEMA

?Real Madrid looked like it would take a 2-1 lead in the second half, with Karim Benzema having a point-blank chance, but Hugo Lloris came to the rescue, with a full-extension kick save on the goal line. Just tremendous.

BESIKTAS TAKES ITS FIRST LEAD

Cenk Tosun scored his second of the day, giving Besiktas a 2-1 lead in the 54th minute at Monaco and putting the Turkish club in line for its third win in as many matches.

BERNARD SENDS SHAKHTAR AHEAD

?Bernard scored for a second time in response to Feyenoord's opener, giving Shakhtar Donetsk its first lead of the day, a 2-1 advantage.

FIRMINO MAKES IT HIGH FIVE FOR LIVERPOOL

Three points are going Liverpool's way. Roberto Firmino struck for his second of the day with a glancing header, making it 5-0 at Maribor.

RONALDO PK BRINGS REAL MADRID LEVEL

Serge Aurier gifted Real Madrid an opportunity to equalize after fouling Toni Kroos with a rash challenge, and Cristiano Ronaldo obliged, beating Hugo Lloris from the spot just minutes before halftime to make it 1-1 in Madrid.

SALAH MAKES IT FOUR

Mohamed Salah, fresh off becoming Egypt's hero in World Cup qualifying, boosted his own stock with his second goal of the day, as both he and Roberto Firmino converged on a cross at the far post before the former tapped home to give Liverpool a 4-0 lead over Maribor.

EDERSON SAVES MERTENS'S PK

Ederson bailed out his teammate, Kyle Walker, saving a penalty kick from Dries Mertens after the England fullback committed the foul. The save preserved Man City's 2-0 lead.

GOALS GALORE IN LEIPZIG

RB Leipzig scored twice in quick succession to seemingly pull away from Porto, but Ivan Marcano pulled one back just before halftime, and the two sides went into the locker room with the hosts leading 3-2. The match also featured this sensational show of skill from Jean-Kevin Augustin.

MONACO, BESIKTAS GO BLOW FOR BLOW

Monaco is looking to give Besiktas its first setback of the competition, and was on its way after Radamel Falcao's opener at the half-hour mark. But the in-form Cenk Tosun answered four minutes later on a wonderful header, making it 1-1.

VARANE OWN GOAL GIVES SPURS LEAD

All eyes were on Harry Kane at the Bernabeu, where it's speculated that Real Madrid will make a massive offer for the Tottenham star, and he made an impact in the 28th minute. Serge Aurier crossed for Kane, whose run prompted Raphael Varane to inadvertently direct the ball into his own goal to give Spurs a 1-0 lead in the Spanish capital.

Real Madrid had wasted an earlier chance, after Cristiano Ronaldo's header clanged off the post and Karim Benzema pulled the rebound wide of an empty net.

SEVILLA RECOVERS AFTER EARLY CONCESSION

It's never easy going on the road, but Sevilla, which entered the day atop Group E, expected a simpler match at Spartak Moscow. It went down early as Quincy Promes scored in the 18th minute, but Simon Kjaer responded in the 30th off the corner kick to make it 1-1.

SALAH MAKES IT THREE

It certainly appears to be Liverpool's day. After setting up Roberto Firmino for the opener, Mohamed Salah makes it 3-0 for Liverpool–with Firmino returning the favor–within 20 minutes at Maribor.

RB LEIPZIG, PORTO EXCHANGE EARLY GOALS

Willi Orban scored in the eighth minute for host RB Leipzig, but Vincent Aboubakar answered 10 minutes later off a throw-in sequence, bringing Porto level at 1-1 in their anticipated Group G clash.

MAN CITY CAN'T BE STOPPED

Gabriel Jesus made it 2-0, finishing off a sensational ball from Kevin De Bruyne to double the Manchester City advantage over Napoli at the 13-minute mark.

COUTINHO DOUBLES THE LIVERPOOL LEAD

It's been all Liverpool in Slovenia, where Philippe Coutinho doubled the advantage for Jurgen Klopp's side, scoring for a fourth straight game.

STERLING SCORES FIRST VS. NAPOLI

Manchester City's sizzling form continued early vs. Napoli at the Etihad, where Raheem Sterling pounced on a blocked shot to score the opener for the Premier League side.

FEYENOORD HOLDS RARE ADVANTAGE, GIVES IT UP

?Dutch champion Feyenoord has had a brutal start to the competition, losing its first two games to Man City and Napoli, but it got off to a good start against Shakhtar Donetsk, with Steven Berghuis scoring in the seventh minute. That didn't last all that long, though, with Bernard equalizing in the 24th minute.

FIRMINO GIVES LIVERPOOL EARLY LEAD

Roberto Firmino wasted no time, finishing off an early cross from Mohamed Salah on the counterattack to give Liverpool a 1-0 lead in the fourth minute.

Here are the lineups for today's games:

Spartak Moscow vs. Sevilla

?

Maribor vs. Liverpool

Manchester City vs. Napoli

?

Feyenoord vs. Shakhtar Donetsk

?

Monaco vs. Besiktas

?

RB Leipzig vs. Porto

?

Real Madrid vs. Tottenham

?

APOEL vs. Borussia Dortmund

?

Matchday 3 concludes on Wednesday, with Chelsea-Roma highlighting the slate. PSG is also in action, at Anderlecht, while Jose Mourinho returns to Portugal as Manchester United meets Benfica.

UCL: Liverpool Routs Maribor; Man City Edges Napoli; Real Madrid, Tottenham Draw

The Champions League group stage hit its halfway point for half of the teams in the field on Tuesday, with Matchday 3 featuring some scintillating matchups and some eye-opening results.

Tottenham went to Real Madrid and earned a 1-1 draw, with Hugo Lloris coming up big in goal. Spurs' Premier League mates Liverpool and Manchester City were big winners Tuesday, with the former rolling to a 7-0 thrashing vs. Maribor, while the latter held off high-powered Napoli. The big surprise of the day happened in Cyprus, where Borussia Dortmund had to fight for a mere draw vs. APOEL, and though it didn't lose ground on Group H-leading Real Madrid and Tottenham, it missed a golden opportunity to make up some.

Elsewhere, Besiktas stayed perfect, coming from behind to win at Monaco, while in the other game in that group, RB Leipzig held off Porto in a five-goal thriller.

Here are the results for the day:

Spartak Moscow 5, Sevilla 1

Maribor 0, Liverpool 7

Manchester City 2 Napoli 1

Feyenoord 1, Shakhtar Donetsk 2

Monaco 1, Besiktas 2

RB Leipzig 3, Porto 2

Real Madrid 1, Tottenham 1

APOEL 1, Borussia Dortmund 1

And here's how the day played out across the competition.

LIVERPOOL SUPPLIES THE EXCLAMATION POINT

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Trent Alexander-Arnold put the finishing touches on Liverpool's thrashing of Maribor, scoring the Reds' sixth and seventh of the day to make it 7-0 in Slovenia. The result, coupled with Spartak Moscow's result vs. Sevilla, will shoot Liverpool to the top of the group.

NAPOLI PULLS ONE BACK

Given the gift of a second penalty, Napoli happily took advantage, with Amadou Diawara beating Ederson from the spot to make it 2-1 at the Etihad in the 73rd minute.

APOEL STUNS DORTMUND–FOR A MOMENT

Dortmund figured it'd get back on track in the Champions League at lowly APOEL, but the Cypriot side has other ideas. Mickael Pote's goal just after the hour mark put Dortmund stunningly behind 1-0 and in need of a change in fortune–and fast. That came from its captain, as Sokratis Papastathopoulos finished off a pass from Mario Gotze five minutes later to make it 1-1.

SPARTAK PULLS AWAY

Spartak Moscow took another lead on Sevilla after conceding the equalizer, with Lorenzo Melgarejo scoring the go-ahead goal off Quincy Promes's assist in the 58th minute. It extended that lead to 3-1 soon after, with Denis Glushakov doing the honors and coming up with the vital insurance goal.

Luiz Adriano netted the fourth in the 74th minute, making it 4-1 and adding to the Russian champions' statement, which comes on the heels of drawing Liverpool on Matchday 2.

LLORIS ROBS BENZEMA

?Real Madrid looked like it would take a 2-1 lead in the second half, with Karim Benzema having a point-blank chance, but Hugo Lloris came to the rescue, with a full-extension kick save on the goal line. Just tremendous.

BESIKTAS TAKES ITS FIRST LEAD

Cenk Tosun scored his second of the day, giving Besiktas a 2-1 lead in the 54th minute at Monaco and putting the Turkish club in line for its third win in as many matches.

BERNARD SENDS SHAKHTAR AHEAD

?Bernard scored for a second time in response to Feyenoord's opener, giving Shakhtar Donetsk its first lead of the day, a 2-1 advantage.

FIRMINO MAKES IT HIGH FIVE FOR LIVERPOOL

Three points are going Liverpool's way. Roberto Firmino struck for his second of the day with a glancing header, making it 5-0 at Maribor.

RONALDO PK BRINGS REAL MADRID LEVEL

Serge Aurier gifted Real Madrid an opportunity to equalize after fouling Toni Kroos with a rash challenge, and Cristiano Ronaldo obliged, beating Hugo Lloris from the spot just minutes before halftime to make it 1-1 in Madrid.

SALAH MAKES IT FOUR

Mohamed Salah, fresh off becoming Egypt's hero in World Cup qualifying, boosted his own stock with his second goal of the day, as both he and Roberto Firmino converged on a cross at the far post before the former tapped home to give Liverpool a 4-0 lead over Maribor.

EDERSON SAVES MERTENS'S PK

Ederson bailed out his teammate, Kyle Walker, saving a penalty kick from Dries Mertens after the England fullback committed the foul. The save preserved Man City's 2-0 lead.

GOALS GALORE IN LEIPZIG

RB Leipzig scored twice in quick succession to seemingly pull away from Porto, but Ivan Marcano pulled one back just before halftime, and the two sides went into the locker room with the hosts leading 3-2. The match also featured this sensational show of skill from Jean-Kevin Augustin.

MONACO, BESIKTAS GO BLOW FOR BLOW

Monaco is looking to give Besiktas its first setback of the competition, and was on its way after Radamel Falcao's opener at the half-hour mark. But the in-form Cenk Tosun answered four minutes later on a wonderful header, making it 1-1.

VARANE OWN GOAL GIVES SPURS LEAD

All eyes were on Harry Kane at the Bernabeu, where it's speculated that Real Madrid will make a massive offer for the Tottenham star, and he made an impact in the 28th minute. Serge Aurier crossed for Kane, whose run prompted Raphael Varane to inadvertently direct the ball into his own goal to give Spurs a 1-0 lead in the Spanish capital.

Real Madrid had wasted an earlier chance, after Cristiano Ronaldo's header clanged off the post and Karim Benzema pulled the rebound wide of an empty net.

SEVILLA RECOVERS AFTER EARLY CONCESSION

It's never easy going on the road, but Sevilla, which entered the day atop Group E, expected a simpler match at Spartak Moscow. It went down early as Quincy Promes scored in the 18th minute, but Simon Kjaer responded in the 30th off the corner kick to make it 1-1.

SALAH MAKES IT THREE

It certainly appears to be Liverpool's day. After setting up Roberto Firmino for the opener, Mohamed Salah makes it 3-0 for Liverpool–with Firmino returning the favor–within 20 minutes at Maribor.

RB LEIPZIG, PORTO EXCHANGE EARLY GOALS

Willi Orban scored in the eighth minute for host RB Leipzig, but Vincent Aboubakar answered 10 minutes later off a throw-in sequence, bringing Porto level at 1-1 in their anticipated Group G clash.

MAN CITY CAN'T BE STOPPED

Gabriel Jesus made it 2-0, finishing off a sensational ball from Kevin De Bruyne to double the Manchester City advantage over Napoli at the 13-minute mark.

COUTINHO DOUBLES THE LIVERPOOL LEAD

It's been all Liverpool in Slovenia, where Philippe Coutinho doubled the advantage for Jurgen Klopp's side, scoring for a fourth straight game.

STERLING SCORES FIRST VS. NAPOLI

Manchester City's sizzling form continued early vs. Napoli at the Etihad, where Raheem Sterling pounced on a blocked shot to score the opener for the Premier League side.

FEYENOORD HOLDS RARE ADVANTAGE, GIVES IT UP

?Dutch champion Feyenoord has had a brutal start to the competition, losing its first two games to Man City and Napoli, but it got off to a good start against Shakhtar Donetsk, with Steven Berghuis scoring in the seventh minute. That didn't last all that long, though, with Bernard equalizing in the 24th minute.

FIRMINO GIVES LIVERPOOL EARLY LEAD

Roberto Firmino wasted no time, finishing off an early cross from Mohamed Salah on the counterattack to give Liverpool a 1-0 lead in the fourth minute.

Here are the lineups for today's games:

Spartak Moscow vs. Sevilla

?

Maribor vs. Liverpool

Manchester City vs. Napoli

?

Feyenoord vs. Shakhtar Donetsk

?

Monaco vs. Besiktas

?

RB Leipzig vs. Porto

?

Real Madrid vs. Tottenham

?

APOEL vs. Borussia Dortmund

?

Matchday 3 concludes on Wednesday, with Chelsea-Roma highlighting the slate. PSG is also in action, at Anderlecht, while Jose Mourinho returns to Portugal as Manchester United meets Benfica.

October FIFA Ranking Provides Glimpse Into World Cup Draw Possibilities

The U.S. men's national team may not be taking part, but the World Cup will still go on, and Monday was a big day on the road to Russia.

FIFA's world ranking for October was released, and while most roll their eyes at the FIFA rankings (the USA actually improved by a position after being eliminated from World Cup contention, so...), they hold a significant role in the World Cup. Per FIFA procedure, the October rankings are used to determine the pots for the Dec. 1 draw in Moscow. Instead of one seeded pot and three pots determined by logistical and geographical reasoning, FIFA has changed its ways so that all four pots are determined purely based on the rankings. What that means is aside from host Russia, which is ranked 65th in the world, the remaining 32 teams are distributed in order of their October ranking. Russia goes into the top pot, followed by the top seven-ranked teams, and the remaining 24 teams are spread into the three subsequent pots in order.

The October ranking was also used to determine the pots for the UEFA playoff round, with the top four teams based on ranking going into Pot 1, and the next four in Pot 2. Switzerland (11), Italy (15), Croatia (18) and Denmark (19) are the highest-ranked teams, and they'll each be drawn against one of Northern Ireland (23), Sweden (25), Republic of Ireland (26) and Greece (47). That draw takes place on Tuesday.

With only 23 of the 32 spots in Russia clinched (four European places, three African ones and two intercontinental playoffs will determine the remaining nine), we can't completely come up with scenarios for groups at the World Cup, but here's what we can glean from the October rankings, and what they'll mean for the draw:

POT 1 IS SET

And Spain is not going to be part of it. The 2010 World Cup champion just misses out as the eighth-ranked team on the planet. Because the top pot is the host nation (Russia) and the seven top-ranked teams, Spain is left in Pot 2, where it could surely factor into a Group of Death.

The top seven teams joining Russia in the top pot are: Germany, Brazil, Portugal, Argentina, Belgium, Poland and France.

No disrespect to Russia or Poland, but there's a clear desired destination for teams in Pots 2-4: Whichever group is headed by Russia or Poland. Even Portugal and Argentina aren't the most daunting top seeds–especially the latter, after its qualifying campaign–but nobody wants to gameplan for Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo in a World Cup.

POT 2 PERMUTATIONS

Spain will lead the second grouping, and beyond that, it gets a little tricky.

Peru, Switzerland, England, Colombia, Italy, Mexico and Uruguay are the next seven nations either in the World Cup or still alive in contention. Should Peru, Switzerland and Italy win their respective playoffs, then the pot would remain as is. Should any or all slip up, there would be a domino effect, and Croatia, Denmark and Iceland are next in line to rise a rung.

Regardless, Spain, England, Colombia, Mexico and Uruguay will be in this pot, and when you start to combine them with the teams in the seeded pot, thing start to get a bit death-y.

POT 3 POSSIBILITIES

If things go to form in the playoffs, Croatia, Denmark and Iceland would lead this grouping, with 2014 quarterfinalist Costa Rica likely settled in this pot as well. Northern Ireland, Sweden and Republic of Ireland will look to change that by winning their playoffs, while Tunisia, Egypt, Senegal and Iran, DR Congo, Australia, Nigeria, Serbia and Japan could all land here, too.

POT 4 STILL LARGELY UNCLEAR

South Korea, Saudi Arabia and first-timer Panama are set for this grouping no matter what. After that, it all comes down to the playoffs and remaining African qualifiers. As of now, Morocco, Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast, Cape Verde and South Africa are all alive here, while Honduras and New Zealand could also land in this pot, should they win their respective playoffs against Australia and Peru, and Greece could also, if it wins its UEFA playoff.

GROUP OF DEATH POTENTIAL

As always, teams from the same region must be kept separate in the draw, aside from UEFA, where up to two European nations can be in the same group. So how does Brazil, Spain, Japan, Ivory Coast sound? What about Germany, Spain, Nigeria, South Korea? France, Uruguay, Croatia, Japan, anyone?

We'll be able to properly simulate and speculate after the conclusion of November's qualifiers and qualifying playoffs, but until then, at least we have some semblance of how the World Cup could look in Russia next summer.

USMNT to face Portugal in first match following World Cup qualifying failure

USMNT to face Portugal in first match following World Cup qualifying failure

USMNT to face Portugal in first match following World Cup qualifying failure

USMNT to face Portugal in first match following World Cup qualifying failure

The U.S. will try to begin picking up the pieces in a friendly at the Estadio Algarve on Nov. 14 as the team begin life after Bruce Arena

USMNT to face Portugal in first match following World Cup qualifying failure

USMNT to face Portugal in first match following World Cup qualifying failure

The U.S. will try to begin picking up the pieces in a friendly at the Estadio Algarve on Nov. 14 as the team begin life after Bruce Arena

The MLS XI, Week 33: Playoff Spots Fly Off the Board, Kaka Bids Farewell

As it turns out, only two major things will be decided on MLS Decision Day: Playoff seeding and one remaining spot in the postseason.

MLS Week 33 saw an abundance of playoff spots get claimed, with the Eastern Conference's six teams all set–though not their order–and only one spot remaining up for grabs in the Western Conference. Three clubs still have their hat in the ring, while two playoff outsiders–the LA Galaxy and Minnesota United–will look to play spoiler on the final day of the season.

All of that was decided as the league played its full slate across two time windows on Sunday, but all 22 teams will be in action simultaneously this coming Sunday at 4 p.m. ET, where playoff matchups will finally be able to be determined, RFK Stadium will close its doors and remaining unknowns will have their mysteries solved.

Until then, here is the best of the weekend that was in MLS:

I. How the West ('s sixth place) will be won

Three teams will fight for the sixth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference on Decision Day, a spot currently held by the San Jose Earthquakes. Hot on their trail are FC Dallas and Real Salt Lake. All three will be at home for their finales, and thanks to the quirks of the MLS rule book, goal differential is not the first tiebreaker. That's big for San Jose, considering its -22 GD is tied for worst in the West. Its 12 wins are two more than FC Dallas, so even though they're tied on points, San Jose is guaranteed a playoff berth with a win over Minnesota. Any slip-up, though, and it'll be a dose of Decision Day chaos. FCD (vs. LA, coming off a horrible 4-0 loss to Seattle) and RSL (vs. Sporting Kansas City coming off a 1-0 loss to rival Colorado) are banking on it.

II. Red Bulls wrap up East's last place

Sixth in the East is going to the New York Red Bulls, after Jesse Marsch's side stemmed the tide of its last-season swoon and followed last weekend's win over Vancouver by holding off Atlanta United for a 0-0 draw and clinching the final spot and a road game in the one-game wildcard round.

That means first and sixth are settled in the East, but second through fifth are wholly up for grabs. With a first-round bye at stake, NYCFC vs. Columbus on Sunday is the game to watch.

III. Thread

IV. Toronto FC matches record

TFC reached the 68-point plateau after a 1-0 win over rival Montreal, with Jozy Altidore moving on from the U.S. men's national team's colossal World Cup qualifying failure by scoring early at BMO Field (cue the "Where was this Tuesday night in Trinidad?!" calls).

The three-point haul brought TFC level with the 1998 LA Galaxy's record mark and has Toronto in position to set a new standard for MLS with a win or draw in its finale at Atlanta. Regardless, Toronto will be the top seed in the East, and it'll host MLS Cup again, provided it gets there. With Altidore and Michael Bradley eager to get over the disappointment of missing the World Cup, the American stars will surely be even more motivated than usual to lift more silverware with their club. In the meantime, they were able to lift the Supporters' Shield.

V. HOW?

VI. What an absolutely perfect save

Take a bow, Stefan Marinovic!

VII. More goalkeeping heroics

Tyler Deric preserved the Houston Dynamo's fourth point off Sporting KC in a matter of five days with this fine day at the office.

VIII. This is probably what the Galaxy had envisioned

It's way too little too late for the LA Galaxy, but Romain Alessandrini, Jermaine Jones, Jonathan Dos Santos and Giovani Dos Santos combining for three goals in a dominating 3-0 win over Minnesota United was probably more along the lines of what Chris Klein & Co. had hoped for with its first post-Bruce Arena season, as opposed to, you know, what's actually transpired since March.

IX. Meet your likely Golden Boot winner

There's still one game to go for all, but the Chicago Fire's Nemanja Nikolic separated himself from the pack with a hat trick on Sunday, and he leads the Golden Boot race by three goals. It was Nikolic's race to win based on his red-hot start to his first Fire season, but a nine-game midseason scoring drought threatened his case. He's come on late, though, with eight goals in his last six games, to retake control.

Is the MLS single-season record in his sights? Another hat trick in the Fire's finale would pull him level with Roy Lassiter, Chris Wondolowski and Bradley Wright-Phillips for the league's top mark of 27. Four goals would set the new standard, though that may be asking a lot of him at Houston, considering his Sunday hat trick was his first of the season.

X. Adorable

XI. Kaka bids farewell to Orlando

There's plenty one can say about Kaka's time with Orlando City. He was a heck of a marquee signing for the club in its expansion year, and he was a great ambassador for the team, city and league. He was also the highest-paid player in the league for the duration of his time in Orlando, and the club has 0 playoff appearances to show for spending north of $7 million a year. Regardless, emotions were high as he played his final home game for Orlando City days after announcing he would not be signing a new deal with the club. His contract expires at the end of the season, and whether he'll be playing elsewhere in MLS or the world or retiring, he was given a hero's sendoff.

It is still crazy to think that Kaka is the last player not named Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo to win the Ballon d'Or (2007).

Obrigado, Kaka!

FIFA releases latest World Rankings

Top six remain unchanged, while U.S. rise despite World Cup qualifying embarrassment.

FIFA releases latest World Rankings

Top six remain unchanged, while U.S. rise despite World Cup qualifying embarrassment.

FIFA releases latest World Rankings

Top six remain unchanged, while U.S. rise despite World Cup qualifying embarrassment.

Football Soccer - France v Sweden -2018 World Cup Qualifying European Zone - Group A - Stade de France, Saint-Denis near Paris, France - 10/11/16

France's Dimitri Payet celebrates with team mate Antoine Griez mannafter he scored against Sweden. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

David Gallop says Ange Postecoglou is focused only on World Cup qualifying at the moment.

Soc Aust

David Gallop says Ange Postecoglou is focused only on World Cup qualifying at the moment

David Gallop says Ange Postecoglou is focused only on World Cup qualifying at the moment.

David Gallop says Ange Postecoglou is focused only on World Cup qualifying at the moment.

David Gallop says Ange Postecoglou is focused only on World Cup qualifying at the moment.

Southampton 2 Newcastle 2: Manolo Gabbiadini pulls Saints back from the brink

It was Rafael Benitez who gave Mauricio Pellegrino his first big opportunity in coaching and it would be the apprentice rather than the old master here who had the last word. Benitez’s Newcastle United had twice got themselves into a match-winning position that would have lifted them to level on points with Chelsea in fifth but were twice frustrated following two goals in 28 minutes from Manolo Gabbiadini. With Southampton struggling to score of late – and further unconvincing defensive performances by goalkeeper Fraser Forster and centre-back Virgil van Dijk – it left Newcastle ultimately more disappointed with a point. That very fact, though, was illustrative both of their obvious improvement under manager Rafael Benitez and how Southampton are still waiting for any really tangible uplift following the decision to replace Claude Puel with Pellegrino. Their players even faced boos at half-time, although the subsequent applause that greeted the final whistle underlined how the jury is very much still out on the new man. There is no such debate over Benitez who, just as he did at Liverpool, is skilfully galvanising a fervent fanbase that can be so pivotal to the club’s success. More than 3,000 Newcastle supporters had made the 700-mile round-trip to Hampshire for this 4pm Sunday kick-off and their relentless chanting of Benitez’s name was indicative of the momentum he has created even amid the longer-term uncertainty over the club’s ownership. Isaac Hayden scores Newcastle's first with a crisp shot Credit:  John Walton/PA “I am disappointed because we could have won but happy because of a point away against a good team,” said Benitez. “We are learning from every game – there were a couple of mistakes but I cannot complain or blame my players. I am not surprised by where we are. The spirit is very good and everybody in the city is behind the team.” Even a training-ground fight between Jamaal Lascelles and Mo Diame does not seem to have undermined that unity, though Jonjo Shelvey’s attempts to separate them left him with a broken finger and needing protective strapping for this game. A combination of the wider dearth of midfield options and Shelvey’s good form has seen him re-enter the England debate of late and his outswinging corner put Southampton under immediate pressure, with Christian Atsu shooting into the side-netting. Although Southampton were largely dominant in possession, Newcastle carried the greater initial goal threat with their quick counter-attacks and soon took a deserved lead. Van Dijk had missed a simple chance to clear and his team were punished. Joselu’s effort was initially blocked by Maya Yoshida, but the ball then bounced in front of Isaac Hayden. The former Arsenal midfielder unleashed a powerful low shot towards the centre of the goal that was sufficient to beat Forster, who could not recover his footing. Manolo Gabbiadini slots Southampton's first equaliser Credit: REUTERS/Eddie Keogh With Lascelles vocally organising his team-mates, the match soon settled into a pattern of Southampton’s possession being negated by Newcastle’s defensive organisation. Dusan Tadic had both a shot and a header go narrowly wide while Van Dijk himself did beat goalkeeper Rob Elliot only for his glancing header to drift over. Southampton were clearly instructed to move the ball more directly in what Pellegrino called a “chaotic” second half but were almost 2-0 behind within seconds of the restart. Van Dijk had again failed to clear, allowing Ayoze Perez and Joselu to combine before Forster was rescued only by the crossbar. Southampton had failed to score in eight out of their last nine league games at St Mary’s – a statistic that had largely mirrored the poor form of Gabbiadini – but he did then deliver spectacularly. The Italy striker had chased a long down-field clearance to the edge of the by-line and looked certain simply to pick out the best option among those team-mates who had surged forward in support. Gabbiadini did turn but, rather than pass to the onrushing Cedric Soares, he simply dribbled the ball infield before again swivelling and brilliantly directing a low, left-footed shot back inside Elliot’s near-post. Parity, however, was to last less than 90 seconds. Southampton again lost their collective concentration, allowing Perez to sprint into the space between Yoshida and Van Dijk and immediately shoot. Forster should have gathered the ball but his save rebounded straight back into the path of Perez, who drilled his shot inside the post. Pellegrino reacted by bringing on both Steven Davis and Sofiane Boufal but, for Newcastle, the second equaliser was largely self-inflicted. Shane Long was chasing a long, bouncing ball forward but running away from goal when Florian Lejeun upended him with an unnecessary and clumsy lunge. Referee Kevin Friend rightly pointed to the penalty spot and Gabbiadini, whose confidence seemed suddenly to have returned following his first goal, finished emphatically into the top corner. Both teams could have won it in the final minutes, although a calf injury to Dwight Gayle once Beneitz had used up his substitutes clearly limited Newcastle. “We were expecting to use his pace but we played the last 10 minutes with 10 players,” said Benitez. “The players had do everything for the team; they are doing a great job.” 5:56PM Full time If Lejeune had not made that needless foul in the box, Newcastle would be heading home with all the points. Saints looked cooked at that point and though he almost made amends with that late bullet header, Davis saved the day. Kevin Friend's leniency with DeAndre Yedlin, who should have been sent off, cost Southampton the chance to exploit numerical supremacy.  5:54PM Time on ball (at full time) Possession: Southampton vs Newcastle 5:54PM Average touch positions (full time) Average touch positions (full time) 5:53PM 90+6 min Newcastle corner when Murphy's shot is arrowed towards the left post. Van Dijk sticks out a leg to knock it behind. Van Dijk heads Ritchie's corner out of the box and the ref blows for time.  5:52PM 90+5 min Boufal hits a long ball from the left-back position that Newcastle mop up and move back up the right. Yedlin hits an outswinging cross into the box. Southampton clear.  5:51PM 90+4 min Van Dijk saves Yoshida from a terrible error when he lets the ball run. He sprints in to stop Gayle having a clear run on goal from 25 yards.  5:50PM 90+2 min Both should have gone off after treatment and then come back on but Friend allows them to stay on for the re-start which provokes much gesticulation from Pellegrino and jeers from the crowd: 'You don't know what you're doing' etc.  5:48PM 90+1 min They sweep the ball forward quickly but the attack ends when Ritchie and Hayden take each other out with a clash of heads. On rush the medical staff who eventually give them the all-clear.  5:47PM 89 min Newcastle break from the goalkick and win a corner. Lejeune evades Austin with a clever run to meet it and powers a header towards the bottom left corner. Davis, having been stationed there, keeps his cool to clear off the line and Saints break.  5:45PM 87 min Lejeune slides in to block Cedric's cross out for a corner and prevents Gabbiadini having a sniff of a hat-trick at the near post. The corner is caught comfortably by Elliott who then takes a knee ... but not in that way.  5:44PM 86 min Both sides still going for it. Bertrand and Boufal combine to free the left-back up the left. His cross is too close to Elliott who dives out to slap it away. Shelvey pouncs on the breaking ball as if time has stood still and passes it to Yedlin but his clearance is hounded down by Lemina and Boufal. The rapid counter breaks down with a foul.  5:42PM 85 min Hayden slips and goes in hard on Van Dijk but gets away with a second booking because it was evidently an accident on his part.  5:41PM 83 min Long goes off for Southampton and Austin, to loud cheers, comes on. Atsu is replaced by Jacob Murphy for Newcastle.  5:40PM 82 min Newcastle free-kick on the right by the junction of the 18-yard line and the vertical line of the penalty box. Ritchie scoops it beyond the far post, looking for the curler.  5:36PM 80 min A couple of bookings, for Gabbiadini kicking the ball away, and Hayden for going over the ball and planting his studs (while sliding) on to the top of Lemina's foot.  5:35PM 78 min Newcastle have a chance at the other end, just like after Saints' first equaliser, but Lejeune, on the end of the pumped cross, attempts to redeem himself instead of nodding it to the unmarked Gayle who gives him a mouthful. Forster's easy catch inspires sarcastic cheers.  5:33PM Time on ball (60 - 75 min) Possession: Southampton vs Newcastle 5:33PM 76 min Gabbiadini trots up and absolutely larrups his left-foot shot into the top right corner, directing it so perfectly that he made the inside of the side-netting billow.  5:33PM GOAL! Southampton level it up with a goal from Manolo Gabbiadini: it's 2-2. Southampton 2 - 2 Newcastle (Manolo Gabbiadini, 75 min) 5:32PM Gabbiadini converts it It's 2-2.  5:32PM Saints have a penalty Long was going away from goal, Lejeune stuck out a leg to give him a hurdle and he fell over it, as was his duty.  5:31PM 74 min Gayle has a sprint down the right into space but only Atsu is up with him and his cross doesn't find him.  5:30PM 72 min Decent near-post cross from Cedric after he robbed Atsu but no one had made the run there. I don't known if he deserves criticism for not looking up or Long and Gabbiadini for not splitting and one of them going there but I err towards the latter.  5:28PM 70 min Boufal concedes a cheap free-kick by dragging down Ritchie on the right, 10 yards up from the corner flag. He bends it into the box with his left-foot where it is glanced on to the back of it and Lejeune, glorying in the space and opportunity, overzealously whacks a rotten shot into orbit.  5:25PM 69 min Newcastle sub: Gayle on for Joselu.  5:25PM 68 min Gabbiadini cushions a pass back to goal 18 yards out towards Long after controlling a 50-yard pass but Merino steps in to nick it away.  5:24PM 67 min Saints substitution: Romeu off, Davis on.  5:23PM 66 min Bertrand and Boufal make progress up the left, square it to Lemina. The crowd screams 'Shoot!' so he does, straight into a thicket of blue-socked legs at the edge of the box. 5:22PM 64 min The corner from the left is swung in by Ritchie and Tadic, surprised to head it after it just beat Van Dijk's leap, miscues it across goal. Joselu attempts to pounce but Saints bundle it away.  5:20PM 62 min The crowd attempts to rouse Southampton with an anthem. It doesn't work instantly as Newcastle break and Ritchie shoots from 25 yards. His shot is blocked and goes out for a corner, giving Benitez an opportunity to withdraw Ayoze Perez and send on Mikel Merino.  5:18PM Time on ball (45 - 60 min) Possession: Southampton vs Newcastle 5:18PM 60 min Friend penalises Gabbiadini for grabbing Lejeune's shirt in the box and hurling himself on to the deck.  5:17PM 59 min Cedric seizes the initiative to have a shot from 20 yards but it's scuffed straight at Elliott.  5:16PM 58 min Forster appears shot, flapping at a dipping left-wing cross from Atsu that thankfully for him sails beyond the goal. Boufal has a couple of direct dribbles in a minute but can't find a away past Yedlin yet. 5:14PM 56 min Rafa Benitez is a fine manager but I still feel he deserves damnation for the reintroduction of the managerial waistcoat. Saints make a sub: Boufal on for Redmond.  5:13PM 54 min Yedlin, who has been booked, gets away with a sliding lunge that pole-axes Redmond. He was nowhere near the ball and should have been dispatched. Instead Kevin Friend let him walk.  5:12PM 53 min Having worked so hard to get back into it and score a rare home goal, Saints have thrown it away.  5:11PM 50 min Forster fails to hang on to a low shot from Peres at the near post and parries it straight back to him. They say no second invitation necessary but it was a second invitation and Ayoze Perez smacked it past the floundering, foundering Fraser Forster.  Ayoze Perez puts Newcastle back into the lead Credit: Clive Rose/Getty Images   5:08PM 48 min Gabbiadini traps a long diagonal quite heavily and it takes him towards the byline. Manquillo tries to hold him up but he turns, skedaddles back towards his own goal. Cedric's run distracts a defender or two and allows Gabbiadini to stroke in a low shot into the bottom corner.  5:08PM GOAL! 1-2! Newcastle are back in the lead with a goal from Ayoze Pérez. Southampton 1 - 2 Newcastle (Ayoze Pérez, 51 min) 5:07PM GOAL! An equaliser from Manolo Gabbiadini for Southampton makes it 1-1. Southampton 1 - 1 Newcastle (Manolo Gabbiadini, 49 min) Credit: Julian Finney/Getty Images   5:07PM The shot count is similar Southampton have attempted nine shots so far, compared to six for Newcastle. Southampton vs Newcastle shots on goal 5:06PM Gabbiadini equalises And it's a solo slalom effort.  5:06PM 47 min They switch it to the right where Ritchie passes to Perez who diddles the dawdling Van Dijk and skelps in a low cross. Joselu sticks out a leg to flick it towards the far post and it loops up. Forster moves across slowly in a bit of a panic but can't get there a sit hits the post and rebounds out. Shelvey sprints forward to retrieve and goes for shot-cross that scares the pants off Forster. Backpedalling, he swipes it behind for a corner in fear of it dropping in.  5:03PM 46 min Newcastle kick off, make ground up the left and earn a throw-in.  4:50PM Half time Southampton have created two outstanding chances and four or five meh ones. Lemina is a hell of a player and really should be playing higher to test Shelvey instead of sweeping up. But the pace has been too pedestrian at times and Newcastle, who are well organised at the back and playing to a well-understood plan on the counter, have looked pretty comfortable with everything bar the left-wing crosses.  Isaac Hayden celebrates scoring Newcastle's opening goal with DeAndre Yedlin Credit: AFP PHOTO / Glyn KIRK   4:47PM 45+1 min Redmond yanks Lascelles' shirt to concede a free-kick on halfway that Shelvey lifts into the box but as it is in midair, the People's Friend blows his Acme Thunderer.  4:47PM Time on ball (first half) Possession: Southampton vs Newcastle 4:47PM Average touch positions (half time) Average touch positions (half time) 4:45PM 45 min The board goes up for an extra minute of possession fun and high jinks from Southampton.  4:43PM 42 min One pass too many from Redmond instead of shooting creates a harder opportunity for Long with a defender breathing down his neck. His shot deflects off Lejeune and balloons towards Elliott who gets there before the lunging Gabbiadini. Redmond should have had a dig himself from 18 yards.  4:41PM 41 min Much better cross from Bertrand from the breakdown as he whips one in from the left and Tadic meets it 10 yards out at the near post. Brave block from Lascelles diverts it out for a corner, from which Southampton plod back into their own half in pursuit of hollow possession dominance.  4:39PM 39 min Lascelles yanks Long over with an arm around his shoulders as they went up for a header 30 yards from the Toon goal. Bertrand floats in a timid cross with no menace at all and Newcastle easily clear.  4:38PM 37 min Yoshida and Perez go up for a header, Perez arriving very late and bundling the centre-half over. Free-kick in the centre-circle.  4:36PM 36 min Saints play another pretty triangular routine down the right with Gabbiadini, Cedric and Tadic. But one mistake on the high wire act of close intricate passing in a constrained space invites failure and so it proves with a minimally overhit pass.  4:34PM 34 min Redmond has a heavy first touch today. New boots? Nike Concretos?  4:33PM 32 min Long comes out to the right to make a triangle with Cedric and Lemina who sweeps the ball across the field where Lejeune steps out of the line to disrupt the attack and send Saints on the retreat.  Mario Lemina is Saints' shining light Credit: Clive Rose/Getty Images   4:31PM 30 min Lemina again snaps into a tackle in the centre of the field to thwart a Newcastle counter, brushing Perez off the ball and darting forward until he was fouled.  4:30PM Time on ball (15 - 30 min) Possession: Southampton vs Newcastle 4:30PM Southampton can't make their domination of the ball count Southampton vs Newcastle 4:29PM 28 min Redmond hasn't mastered the training ground free-kick and is drowned in boos when he passes it straight to Atsu but a tigerish tackle from Lemina saves the day. He moves the ball out to the left where Yoshida takes it on and bends in a superb cross with his left-foot that parts Gabbiadini's hair with the backdraft but was just an inch too high to ram home.  4:27PM 27 min Van Dijk and Southampton are back to their sterile crossfield passing for a phase until they move it forward and earn a free-kick for Manquillo's foul 35 yards out.  4:26PM 24 min Perez is penalised for a trip on Yoshida, for standing on his heel. The linesman didn't flag as Perez exploited his advantage by sprinting clear through on goal but Friend intervened.  Hayden rams in his shot Credit: John Walton/PA   4:24PM 22 min Southampton attack quickly from the kick-off and Gabbiadini gets into a tangle with Lejeune who, with both of them on the floor, manages to hook the ball out for a corner. Elliott flaps at the centre misses it completely and Van Dijk steers a header wide of the gaping net. Should have been the equaliser. Saints have missed two golden headed chances.  Miss: Southampton 0 - 1 Newcastle (Virgil van Dijk, 22 min)   4:22PM 21 min The loopy cross came in from the left, Atsu met it on the volley and walloped it into the defender at point blank range. Forster went down to save the shot that didn't get through to him and couldn't get up quick enough when Hayden thundered in the rebound from the D.   4:20PM GOAL! Isaac Hayden scores for Newcastle to make it 0-1! Southampton 0 - 1 Newcastle (Isaac Hayden, 20 min) 4:20PM Newcastle take the lead Hayden rams in a shot from 18 yards. Forster was wrong-footed.  4:19PM 19 min Forster, who I've long thought pedestrian with his footwork, has no sense of urgency when receiving a back pass. He doesn't see Perez hounding into the space between them and shanks his clearance into him and it bounces harmlessly.  4:18PM 17 min Tadic misses a golden chance at the back post. Van Dijk made the chance with a Hansen-esque gallop upfield and a pass out to Bertrand on the left. He threads a pass on to Redmond who stands up the ball to the back stick. Tadic tries to head it back across goal and over Elliott but bludgeons it over the bar.  Miss: Southampton 0 - 0 Newcastle (Dusan Tadic, 16 min)   4:15PM Neither Southampton or Newcastle are testing the goalkeepers so far Tense opening quarter of an hour at St. Mary's Stadium, as Southampton and Newcastle struggle to get shots on goal Southampton vs Newcastle shots on goal 4:15PM Time on ball (0 - 15 min) Possession: Southampton vs Newcastle 4:15PM 15 min Sharp turn from Tadic when found by Cedric's pass. He spins Hayden and spanks a left-foot riser over the bar from 25 yards.  4:14PM Southampton have their first strike at goal Southampton respond to the earlier Newcastle effort with their first shot of the game. Southampton vs Newcastle shots on goal 4:14PM 13 min Redmond has  a saunter up the left but when he cuts it back for Romeu he overhits it and Newcastle break through Hayden who passes to Atsu. The left-sider hares up the middle but fluffs his simple pass to Joselu.  4:11PM 11 min Romeu bodyslams Shelvey to concede a free-kick, running into him late after Shelvey had played a pass. The referee doesn't book him. Everyone's allowed one free hit on Shelvey it seems  ... and not without reason.  4:10PM 10 min Shelvey takes to the back post where Atsu meets it after a diversion and crashes a left-foot shot into the side-netting from 10 yards and a tight if not right angle.  4:09PM 8 min Newcastle play it back to Elliot who chips it up to halfway where Manquillo cushions it on his chest and switches over to the right. Yedlin nods it on to Ritchie who hooks a bouncing ball over Bertrand for Perez who advances towards the box but wastes a cross. He hits it too close to Van Dijk and Southampton hustle it out for a corner. 4:07PM 7 min Lemina keeps dropping between the centre-backs, who split, and the fullbacks bomb on when Southampton build from the back. He looked more influential playing higher up at Selhurst Park.  4:06PM 5 min First Newcastle attack with Manquillo and Atsu combining up the left but the left-back's lack of an adequate left foot means his control as he skirted the whitewash lets him down and the ball dribbles out for a Saints throw.  4:05PM 4 min Southampton continue to hog the ball, stroking it around, not being pressed in the first 60 yards. Yoshida mixes it up with another raking diagonal for Bertrand that Yedlin and Ritchie deal with competently.  4:03PM 2 min That's better, a long ball from Yoshida from right to left, headed on by Long to Redmond who dinks in a dipping cross that Manquillo, covering diligently and dutifully, heads out for a throw-in.  4:01PM 1 min Saints kick off, move it back to Yoshida and pass it from left to right and back again before Van Dijk launches a long diagonal up the right for Tadic who turns and heads back towards his own goal. Newcastle haven't had a touch but it's a parody of possession football so far.  4:00PM Time for the teams to huddle Newcastle are in blue. We'll be off in a few seconds.  3:45PM A word from some sponsors Best-priced accumulators | New customer offers   3:43PM This Saints kit Is very Steve Moran but I can't help but dislike it. Stripes > bibs.  Southampton Forster; Cedric, Van Dijk, Yoshida, Bertrand; Romeu, Lemina; Tadic, Gabbiadini, Redmond, Long.  Subs Hoedt, Davis, Austin, McCarthy, Ward-Prowse, Boufal, McQueen.  Fans gather at St Mary's Credit: MATTHEW CHILDS/Action Images via Reuters Newcastle Elliot, Yedlin, Lascelles, Lejeune, Manquillo; Shelvey; Ritchie, Hayden, Perez, Atsu; Joselu.  Subs Clark, Murphy, Gayle, Diame, Merino, Darlow, Jesus Gamez.  Referee Kevin has a Friend (in Jesus). 3:38PM St Mary's Has not been a happy away trip for Newcastle United recently:  their last four visits have all ended in comprehensive defeat - 2-0 in 2012-13, 4-0 the following season, 4-0 again in 2014-15 and 3-1 during the Toon's relegation season. You have to go back to September 2004 (Southampton's relegation season) for Newcastle's last victory there and it came with a forward line of Craig Bellamy, Patrick Kluivert and Alan Shearer. None of them scored, however, and they left 2-1 winners by virtue of an own goal from David Prutton and one from the right-back Stephen Carr.  3:24PM Ch-ch-ch-changes Southampton bring in Manolo Gabbiadini for Steven Davis in their quest for a second home victory of the season. Newcastle draft in Florian Lejeune for Ciaran Clark at centre-half and Isaac Hayden for Mikel Merino as alterations to the starting XI for the draw with Liverpool. 3:19PM Team news The teams are in! Here's how #SaintsFC line-up to face #NUFC this afternoon in the #PL: pic.twitter.com/X0rNFJlXUJ— Southampton FC (@SouthamptonFC) October 15, 2017 TEAM NEWS: Here's how Newcastle United will line up at @SouthamptonFC in the @premierleague this afternoon (kick-off 4pm BST). #NUFCpic.twitter.com/hgz8tFwbKI— Newcastle United FC (@NUFC) October 15, 2017   3:16PM Pre-match package What is it? It's the Premier League clash between Southampton and Newcastle. When is it? Today, so Sunday, October 15. What time is kick-off? At 4pm. What TV channel is it on? You can watch live coverage on Sky Sports Premier League or Sky Sports Main Event channel. Alternatively, bookmark this page and follow the latest with our rolling blog. Shane Long is expected to return for Southampton Credit: Reuters What are the odds? Southampton to win 20/23 Draw 13/5 Newcastle to win 15/4 What's the team news? Shane Long is expected to be fit to play for Southampton despite the forward missing Ireland's World Cup qualifying win against Wales on Monday because of a hip injury. Newcastle's Jonjo Shelvey could play wearing a special cast, having broken a finger while trying to break up a training ground disagreement last week. Defenders Paul Dummett and Massadio Haidara remain sidelined. Mauricio Pellegrino hopes to get one over his former manager Credit: Reuters What have they been saying? Rafa Benitez on coming up against Mauricio Pellegrino, who knows him better than most having both played for and coached with him. “It will be difficult to surprise him. “It’s a strange feeling. Especially Mauricio, because he was my player and I signed him for Liverpool too because I had a lot of confidence in him. And after he was my assistant for the same reason. “He knows everything about me because he was my player and assistant. He has an advantage, but at the same time we know him really well too. It is a special situation. If you wanted to say something or change something, he would know already.”

Southampton 2 Newcastle 2: Manolo Gabbiadini pulls Saints back from the brink

It was Rafael Benitez who gave Mauricio Pellegrino his first big opportunity in coaching and it would be the apprentice rather than the old master here who had the last word. Benitez’s Newcastle United had twice got themselves into a match-winning position that would have lifted them to level on points with Chelsea in fifth but were twice frustrated following two goals in 28 minutes from Manolo Gabbiadini. With Southampton struggling to score of late – and further unconvincing defensive performances by goalkeeper Fraser Forster and centre-back Virgil van Dijk – it left Newcastle ultimately more disappointed with a point. That very fact, though, was illustrative both of their obvious improvement under manager Rafael Benitez and how Southampton are still waiting for any really tangible uplift following the decision to replace Claude Puel with Pellegrino. Their players even faced boos at half-time, although the subsequent applause that greeted the final whistle underlined how the jury is very much still out on the new man. There is no such debate over Benitez who, just as he did at Liverpool, is skilfully galvanising a fervent fanbase that can be so pivotal to the club’s success. More than 3,000 Newcastle supporters had made the 700-mile round-trip to Hampshire for this 4pm Sunday kick-off and their relentless chanting of Benitez’s name was indicative of the momentum he has created even amid the longer-term uncertainty over the club’s ownership. Isaac Hayden scores Newcastle's first with a crisp shot Credit:  John Walton/PA “I am disappointed because we could have won but happy because of a point away against a good team,” said Benitez. “We are learning from every game – there were a couple of mistakes but I cannot complain or blame my players. I am not surprised by where we are. The spirit is very good and everybody in the city is behind the team.” Even a training-ground fight between Jamaal Lascelles and Mo Diame does not seem to have undermined that unity, though Jonjo Shelvey’s attempts to separate them left him with a broken finger and needing protective strapping for this game. A combination of the wider dearth of midfield options and Shelvey’s good form has seen him re-enter the England debate of late and his outswinging corner put Southampton under immediate pressure, with Christian Atsu shooting into the side-netting. Although Southampton were largely dominant in possession, Newcastle carried the greater initial goal threat with their quick counter-attacks and soon took a deserved lead. Van Dijk had missed a simple chance to clear and his team were punished. Joselu’s effort was initially blocked by Maya Yoshida, but the ball then bounced in front of Isaac Hayden. The former Arsenal midfielder unleashed a powerful low shot towards the centre of the goal that was sufficient to beat Forster, who could not recover his footing. Manolo Gabbiadini slots Southampton's first equaliser Credit: REUTERS/Eddie Keogh With Lascelles vocally organising his team-mates, the match soon settled into a pattern of Southampton’s possession being negated by Newcastle’s defensive organisation. Dusan Tadic had both a shot and a header go narrowly wide while Van Dijk himself did beat goalkeeper Rob Elliot only for his glancing header to drift over. Southampton were clearly instructed to move the ball more directly in what Pellegrino called a “chaotic” second half but were almost 2-0 behind within seconds of the restart. Van Dijk had again failed to clear, allowing Ayoze Perez and Joselu to combine before Forster was rescued only by the crossbar. Southampton had failed to score in eight out of their last nine league games at St Mary’s – a statistic that had largely mirrored the poor form of Gabbiadini – but he did then deliver spectacularly. The Italy striker had chased a long down-field clearance to the edge of the by-line and looked certain simply to pick out the best option among those team-mates who had surged forward in support. Gabbiadini did turn but, rather than pass to the onrushing Cedric Soares, he simply dribbled the ball infield before again swivelling and brilliantly directing a low, left-footed shot back inside Elliot’s near-post. Parity, however, was to last less than 90 seconds. Southampton again lost their collective concentration, allowing Perez to sprint into the space between Yoshida and Van Dijk and immediately shoot. Forster should have gathered the ball but his save rebounded straight back into the path of Perez, who drilled his shot inside the post. Pellegrino reacted by bringing on both Steven Davis and Sofiane Boufal but, for Newcastle, the second equaliser was largely self-inflicted. Shane Long was chasing a long, bouncing ball forward but running away from goal when Florian Lejeun upended him with an unnecessary and clumsy lunge. Referee Kevin Friend rightly pointed to the penalty spot and Gabbiadini, whose confidence seemed suddenly to have returned following his first goal, finished emphatically into the top corner. Both teams could have won it in the final minutes, although a calf injury to Dwight Gayle once Beneitz had used up his substitutes clearly limited Newcastle. “We were expecting to use his pace but we played the last 10 minutes with 10 players,” said Benitez. “The players had do everything for the team; they are doing a great job.” 5:56PM Full time If Lejeune had not made that needless foul in the box, Newcastle would be heading home with all the points. Saints looked cooked at that point and though he almost made amends with that late bullet header, Davis saved the day. Kevin Friend's leniency with DeAndre Yedlin, who should have been sent off, cost Southampton the chance to exploit numerical supremacy.  5:54PM Time on ball (at full time) Possession: Southampton vs Newcastle 5:54PM Average touch positions (full time) Average touch positions (full time) 5:53PM 90+6 min Newcastle corner when Murphy's shot is arrowed towards the left post. Van Dijk sticks out a leg to knock it behind. Van Dijk heads Ritchie's corner out of the box and the ref blows for time.  5:52PM 90+5 min Boufal hits a long ball from the left-back position that Newcastle mop up and move back up the right. Yedlin hits an outswinging cross into the box. Southampton clear.  5:51PM 90+4 min Van Dijk saves Yoshida from a terrible error when he lets the ball run. He sprints in to stop Gayle having a clear run on goal from 25 yards.  5:50PM 90+2 min Both should have gone off after treatment and then come back on but Friend allows them to stay on for the re-start which provokes much gesticulation from Pellegrino and jeers from the crowd: 'You don't know what you're doing' etc.  5:48PM 90+1 min They sweep the ball forward quickly but the attack ends when Ritchie and Hayden take each other out with a clash of heads. On rush the medical staff who eventually give them the all-clear.  5:47PM 89 min Newcastle break from the goalkick and win a corner. Lejeune evades Austin with a clever run to meet it and powers a header towards the bottom left corner. Davis, having been stationed there, keeps his cool to clear off the line and Saints break.  5:45PM 87 min Lejeune slides in to block Cedric's cross out for a corner and prevents Gabbiadini having a sniff of a hat-trick at the near post. The corner is caught comfortably by Elliott who then takes a knee ... but not in that way.  5:44PM 86 min Both sides still going for it. Bertrand and Boufal combine to free the left-back up the left. His cross is too close to Elliott who dives out to slap it away. Shelvey pouncs on the breaking ball as if time has stood still and passes it to Yedlin but his clearance is hounded down by Lemina and Boufal. The rapid counter breaks down with a foul.  5:42PM 85 min Hayden slips and goes in hard on Van Dijk but gets away with a second booking because it was evidently an accident on his part.  5:41PM 83 min Long goes off for Southampton and Austin, to loud cheers, comes on. Atsu is replaced by Jacob Murphy for Newcastle.  5:40PM 82 min Newcastle free-kick on the right by the junction of the 18-yard line and the vertical line of the penalty box. Ritchie scoops it beyond the far post, looking for the curler.  5:36PM 80 min A couple of bookings, for Gabbiadini kicking the ball away, and Hayden for going over the ball and planting his studs (while sliding) on to the top of Lemina's foot.  5:35PM 78 min Newcastle have a chance at the other end, just like after Saints' first equaliser, but Lejeune, on the end of the pumped cross, attempts to redeem himself instead of nodding it to the unmarked Gayle who gives him a mouthful. Forster's easy catch inspires sarcastic cheers.  5:33PM Time on ball (60 - 75 min) Possession: Southampton vs Newcastle 5:33PM 76 min Gabbiadini trots up and absolutely larrups his left-foot shot into the top right corner, directing it so perfectly that he made the inside of the side-netting billow.  5:33PM GOAL! Southampton level it up with a goal from Manolo Gabbiadini: it's 2-2. Southampton 2 - 2 Newcastle (Manolo Gabbiadini, 75 min) 5:32PM Gabbiadini converts it It's 2-2.  5:32PM Saints have a penalty Long was going away from goal, Lejeune stuck out a leg to give him a hurdle and he fell over it, as was his duty.  5:31PM 74 min Gayle has a sprint down the right into space but only Atsu is up with him and his cross doesn't find him.  5:30PM 72 min Decent near-post cross from Cedric after he robbed Atsu but no one had made the run there. I don't known if he deserves criticism for not looking up or Long and Gabbiadini for not splitting and one of them going there but I err towards the latter.  5:28PM 70 min Boufal concedes a cheap free-kick by dragging down Ritchie on the right, 10 yards up from the corner flag. He bends it into the box with his left-foot where it is glanced on to the back of it and Lejeune, glorying in the space and opportunity, overzealously whacks a rotten shot into orbit.  5:25PM 69 min Newcastle sub: Gayle on for Joselu.  5:25PM 68 min Gabbiadini cushions a pass back to goal 18 yards out towards Long after controlling a 50-yard pass but Merino steps in to nick it away.  5:24PM 67 min Saints substitution: Romeu off, Davis on.  5:23PM 66 min Bertrand and Boufal make progress up the left, square it to Lemina. The crowd screams 'Shoot!' so he does, straight into a thicket of blue-socked legs at the edge of the box. 5:22PM 64 min The corner from the left is swung in by Ritchie and Tadic, surprised to head it after it just beat Van Dijk's leap, miscues it across goal. Joselu attempts to pounce but Saints bundle it away.  5:20PM 62 min The crowd attempts to rouse Southampton with an anthem. It doesn't work instantly as Newcastle break and Ritchie shoots from 25 yards. His shot is blocked and goes out for a corner, giving Benitez an opportunity to withdraw Ayoze Perez and send on Mikel Merino.  5:18PM Time on ball (45 - 60 min) Possession: Southampton vs Newcastle 5:18PM 60 min Friend penalises Gabbiadini for grabbing Lejeune's shirt in the box and hurling himself on to the deck.  5:17PM 59 min Cedric seizes the initiative to have a shot from 20 yards but it's scuffed straight at Elliott.  5:16PM 58 min Forster appears shot, flapping at a dipping left-wing cross from Atsu that thankfully for him sails beyond the goal. Boufal has a couple of direct dribbles in a minute but can't find a away past Yedlin yet. 5:14PM 56 min Rafa Benitez is a fine manager but I still feel he deserves damnation for the reintroduction of the managerial waistcoat. Saints make a sub: Boufal on for Redmond.  5:13PM 54 min Yedlin, who has been booked, gets away with a sliding lunge that pole-axes Redmond. He was nowhere near the ball and should have been dispatched. Instead Kevin Friend let him walk.  5:12PM 53 min Having worked so hard to get back into it and score a rare home goal, Saints have thrown it away.  5:11PM 50 min Forster fails to hang on to a low shot from Peres at the near post and parries it straight back to him. They say no second invitation necessary but it was a second invitation and Ayoze Perez smacked it past the floundering, foundering Fraser Forster.  Ayoze Perez puts Newcastle back into the lead Credit: Clive Rose/Getty Images   5:08PM 48 min Gabbiadini traps a long diagonal quite heavily and it takes him towards the byline. Manquillo tries to hold him up but he turns, skedaddles back towards his own goal. Cedric's run distracts a defender or two and allows Gabbiadini to stroke in a low shot into the bottom corner.  5:08PM GOAL! 1-2! Newcastle are back in the lead with a goal from Ayoze Pérez. Southampton 1 - 2 Newcastle (Ayoze Pérez, 51 min) 5:07PM GOAL! An equaliser from Manolo Gabbiadini for Southampton makes it 1-1. Southampton 1 - 1 Newcastle (Manolo Gabbiadini, 49 min) Credit: Julian Finney/Getty Images   5:07PM The shot count is similar Southampton have attempted nine shots so far, compared to six for Newcastle. Southampton vs Newcastle shots on goal 5:06PM Gabbiadini equalises And it's a solo slalom effort.  5:06PM 47 min They switch it to the right where Ritchie passes to Perez who diddles the dawdling Van Dijk and skelps in a low cross. Joselu sticks out a leg to flick it towards the far post and it loops up. Forster moves across slowly in a bit of a panic but can't get there a sit hits the post and rebounds out. Shelvey sprints forward to retrieve and goes for shot-cross that scares the pants off Forster. Backpedalling, he swipes it behind for a corner in fear of it dropping in.  5:03PM 46 min Newcastle kick off, make ground up the left and earn a throw-in.  4:50PM Half time Southampton have created two outstanding chances and four or five meh ones. Lemina is a hell of a player and really should be playing higher to test Shelvey instead of sweeping up. But the pace has been too pedestrian at times and Newcastle, who are well organised at the back and playing to a well-understood plan on the counter, have looked pretty comfortable with everything bar the left-wing crosses.  Isaac Hayden celebrates scoring Newcastle's opening goal with DeAndre Yedlin Credit: AFP PHOTO / Glyn KIRK   4:47PM 45+1 min Redmond yanks Lascelles' shirt to concede a free-kick on halfway that Shelvey lifts into the box but as it is in midair, the People's Friend blows his Acme Thunderer.  4:47PM Time on ball (first half) Possession: Southampton vs Newcastle 4:47PM Average touch positions (half time) Average touch positions (half time) 4:45PM 45 min The board goes up for an extra minute of possession fun and high jinks from Southampton.  4:43PM 42 min One pass too many from Redmond instead of shooting creates a harder opportunity for Long with a defender breathing down his neck. His shot deflects off Lejeune and balloons towards Elliott who gets there before the lunging Gabbiadini. Redmond should have had a dig himself from 18 yards.  4:41PM 41 min Much better cross from Bertrand from the breakdown as he whips one in from the left and Tadic meets it 10 yards out at the near post. Brave block from Lascelles diverts it out for a corner, from which Southampton plod back into their own half in pursuit of hollow possession dominance.  4:39PM 39 min Lascelles yanks Long over with an arm around his shoulders as they went up for a header 30 yards from the Toon goal. Bertrand floats in a timid cross with no menace at all and Newcastle easily clear.  4:38PM 37 min Yoshida and Perez go up for a header, Perez arriving very late and bundling the centre-half over. Free-kick in the centre-circle.  4:36PM 36 min Saints play another pretty triangular routine down the right with Gabbiadini, Cedric and Tadic. But one mistake on the high wire act of close intricate passing in a constrained space invites failure and so it proves with a minimally overhit pass.  4:34PM 34 min Redmond has a heavy first touch today. New boots? Nike Concretos?  4:33PM 32 min Long comes out to the right to make a triangle with Cedric and Lemina who sweeps the ball across the field where Lejeune steps out of the line to disrupt the attack and send Saints on the retreat.  Mario Lemina is Saints' shining light Credit: Clive Rose/Getty Images   4:31PM 30 min Lemina again snaps into a tackle in the centre of the field to thwart a Newcastle counter, brushing Perez off the ball and darting forward until he was fouled.  4:30PM Time on ball (15 - 30 min) Possession: Southampton vs Newcastle 4:30PM Southampton can't make their domination of the ball count Southampton vs Newcastle 4:29PM 28 min Redmond hasn't mastered the training ground free-kick and is drowned in boos when he passes it straight to Atsu but a tigerish tackle from Lemina saves the day. He moves the ball out to the left where Yoshida takes it on and bends in a superb cross with his left-foot that parts Gabbiadini's hair with the backdraft but was just an inch too high to ram home.  4:27PM 27 min Van Dijk and Southampton are back to their sterile crossfield passing for a phase until they move it forward and earn a free-kick for Manquillo's foul 35 yards out.  4:26PM 24 min Perez is penalised for a trip on Yoshida, for standing on his heel. The linesman didn't flag as Perez exploited his advantage by sprinting clear through on goal but Friend intervened.  Hayden rams in his shot Credit: John Walton/PA   4:24PM 22 min Southampton attack quickly from the kick-off and Gabbiadini gets into a tangle with Lejeune who, with both of them on the floor, manages to hook the ball out for a corner. Elliott flaps at the centre misses it completely and Van Dijk steers a header wide of the gaping net. Should have been the equaliser. Saints have missed two golden headed chances.  Miss: Southampton 0 - 1 Newcastle (Virgil van Dijk, 22 min)   4:22PM 21 min The loopy cross came in from the left, Atsu met it on the volley and walloped it into the defender at point blank range. Forster went down to save the shot that didn't get through to him and couldn't get up quick enough when Hayden thundered in the rebound from the D.   4:20PM GOAL! Isaac Hayden scores for Newcastle to make it 0-1! Southampton 0 - 1 Newcastle (Isaac Hayden, 20 min) 4:20PM Newcastle take the lead Hayden rams in a shot from 18 yards. Forster was wrong-footed.  4:19PM 19 min Forster, who I've long thought pedestrian with his footwork, has no sense of urgency when receiving a back pass. He doesn't see Perez hounding into the space between them and shanks his clearance into him and it bounces harmlessly.  4:18PM 17 min Tadic misses a golden chance at the back post. Van Dijk made the chance with a Hansen-esque gallop upfield and a pass out to Bertrand on the left. He threads a pass on to Redmond who stands up the ball to the back stick. Tadic tries to head it back across goal and over Elliott but bludgeons it over the bar.  Miss: Southampton 0 - 0 Newcastle (Dusan Tadic, 16 min)   4:15PM Neither Southampton or Newcastle are testing the goalkeepers so far Tense opening quarter of an hour at St. Mary's Stadium, as Southampton and Newcastle struggle to get shots on goal Southampton vs Newcastle shots on goal 4:15PM Time on ball (0 - 15 min) Possession: Southampton vs Newcastle 4:15PM 15 min Sharp turn from Tadic when found by Cedric's pass. He spins Hayden and spanks a left-foot riser over the bar from 25 yards.  4:14PM Southampton have their first strike at goal Southampton respond to the earlier Newcastle effort with their first shot of the game. Southampton vs Newcastle shots on goal 4:14PM 13 min Redmond has  a saunter up the left but when he cuts it back for Romeu he overhits it and Newcastle break through Hayden who passes to Atsu. The left-sider hares up the middle but fluffs his simple pass to Joselu.  4:11PM 11 min Romeu bodyslams Shelvey to concede a free-kick, running into him late after Shelvey had played a pass. The referee doesn't book him. Everyone's allowed one free hit on Shelvey it seems  ... and not without reason.  4:10PM 10 min Shelvey takes to the back post where Atsu meets it after a diversion and crashes a left-foot shot into the side-netting from 10 yards and a tight if not right angle.  4:09PM 8 min Newcastle play it back to Elliot who chips it up to halfway where Manquillo cushions it on his chest and switches over to the right. Yedlin nods it on to Ritchie who hooks a bouncing ball over Bertrand for Perez who advances towards the box but wastes a cross. He hits it too close to Van Dijk and Southampton hustle it out for a corner. 4:07PM 7 min Lemina keeps dropping between the centre-backs, who split, and the fullbacks bomb on when Southampton build from the back. He looked more influential playing higher up at Selhurst Park.  4:06PM 5 min First Newcastle attack with Manquillo and Atsu combining up the left but the left-back's lack of an adequate left foot means his control as he skirted the whitewash lets him down and the ball dribbles out for a Saints throw.  4:05PM 4 min Southampton continue to hog the ball, stroking it around, not being pressed in the first 60 yards. Yoshida mixes it up with another raking diagonal for Bertrand that Yedlin and Ritchie deal with competently.  4:03PM 2 min That's better, a long ball from Yoshida from right to left, headed on by Long to Redmond who dinks in a dipping cross that Manquillo, covering diligently and dutifully, heads out for a throw-in.  4:01PM 1 min Saints kick off, move it back to Yoshida and pass it from left to right and back again before Van Dijk launches a long diagonal up the right for Tadic who turns and heads back towards his own goal. Newcastle haven't had a touch but it's a parody of possession football so far.  4:00PM Time for the teams to huddle Newcastle are in blue. We'll be off in a few seconds.  3:45PM A word from some sponsors Best-priced accumulators | New customer offers   3:43PM This Saints kit Is very Steve Moran but I can't help but dislike it. Stripes > bibs.  Southampton Forster; Cedric, Van Dijk, Yoshida, Bertrand; Romeu, Lemina; Tadic, Gabbiadini, Redmond, Long.  Subs Hoedt, Davis, Austin, McCarthy, Ward-Prowse, Boufal, McQueen.  Fans gather at St Mary's Credit: MATTHEW CHILDS/Action Images via Reuters Newcastle Elliot, Yedlin, Lascelles, Lejeune, Manquillo; Shelvey; Ritchie, Hayden, Perez, Atsu; Joselu.  Subs Clark, Murphy, Gayle, Diame, Merino, Darlow, Jesus Gamez.  Referee Kevin has a Friend (in Jesus). 3:38PM St Mary's Has not been a happy away trip for Newcastle United recently:  their last four visits have all ended in comprehensive defeat - 2-0 in 2012-13, 4-0 the following season, 4-0 again in 2014-15 and 3-1 during the Toon's relegation season. You have to go back to September 2004 (Southampton's relegation season) for Newcastle's last victory there and it came with a forward line of Craig Bellamy, Patrick Kluivert and Alan Shearer. None of them scored, however, and they left 2-1 winners by virtue of an own goal from David Prutton and one from the right-back Stephen Carr.  3:24PM Ch-ch-ch-changes Southampton bring in Manolo Gabbiadini for Steven Davis in their quest for a second home victory of the season. Newcastle draft in Florian Lejeune for Ciaran Clark at centre-half and Isaac Hayden for Mikel Merino as alterations to the starting XI for the draw with Liverpool. 3:19PM Team news The teams are in! Here's how #SaintsFC line-up to face #NUFC this afternoon in the #PL: pic.twitter.com/X0rNFJlXUJ— Southampton FC (@SouthamptonFC) October 15, 2017 TEAM NEWS: Here's how Newcastle United will line up at @SouthamptonFC in the @premierleague this afternoon (kick-off 4pm BST). #NUFCpic.twitter.com/hgz8tFwbKI— Newcastle United FC (@NUFC) October 15, 2017   3:16PM Pre-match package What is it? It's the Premier League clash between Southampton and Newcastle. When is it? Today, so Sunday, October 15. What time is kick-off? At 4pm. What TV channel is it on? You can watch live coverage on Sky Sports Premier League or Sky Sports Main Event channel. Alternatively, bookmark this page and follow the latest with our rolling blog. Shane Long is expected to return for Southampton Credit: Reuters What are the odds? Southampton to win 20/23 Draw 13/5 Newcastle to win 15/4 What's the team news? Shane Long is expected to be fit to play for Southampton despite the forward missing Ireland's World Cup qualifying win against Wales on Monday because of a hip injury. Newcastle's Jonjo Shelvey could play wearing a special cast, having broken a finger while trying to break up a training ground disagreement last week. Defenders Paul Dummett and Massadio Haidara remain sidelined. Mauricio Pellegrino hopes to get one over his former manager Credit: Reuters What have they been saying? Rafa Benitez on coming up against Mauricio Pellegrino, who knows him better than most having both played for and coached with him. “It will be difficult to surprise him. “It’s a strange feeling. Especially Mauricio, because he was my player and I signed him for Liverpool too because I had a lot of confidence in him. And after he was my assistant for the same reason. “He knows everything about me because he was my player and assistant. He has an advantage, but at the same time we know him really well too. It is a special situation. If you wanted to say something or change something, he would know already.”

Southampton 2 Newcastle 2: Manolo Gabbiadini pulls Saints back from the brink

It was Rafael Benitez who gave Mauricio Pellegrino his first big opportunity in coaching and it would be the apprentice rather than the old master here who had the last word. Benitez’s Newcastle United had twice got themselves into a match-winning position that would have lifted them to level on points with Chelsea in fifth but were twice frustrated following two goals in 28 minutes from Manolo Gabbiadini. With Southampton struggling to score of late – and further unconvincing defensive performances by goalkeeper Fraser Forster and centre-back Virgil van Dijk – it left Newcastle ultimately more disappointed with a point. That very fact, though, was illustrative both of their obvious improvement under manager Rafael Benitez and how Southampton are still waiting for any really tangible uplift following the decision to replace Claude Puel with Pellegrino. Their players even faced boos at half-time, although the subsequent applause that greeted the final whistle underlined how the jury is very much still out on the new man. There is no such debate over Benitez who, just as he did at Liverpool, is skilfully galvanising a fervent fanbase that can be so pivotal to the club’s success. More than 3,000 Newcastle supporters had made the 700-mile round-trip to Hampshire for this 4pm Sunday kick-off and their relentless chanting of Benitez’s name was indicative of the momentum he has created even amid the longer-term uncertainty over the club’s ownership. Isaac Hayden scores Newcastle's first with a crisp shot Credit:  John Walton/PA “I am disappointed because we could have won but happy because of a point away against a good team,” said Benitez. “We are learning from every game – there were a couple of mistakes but I cannot complain or blame my players. I am not surprised by where we are. The spirit is very good and everybody in the city is behind the team.” Even a training-ground fight between Jamaal Lascelles and Mo Diame does not seem to have undermined that unity, though Jonjo Shelvey’s attempts to separate them left him with a broken finger and needing protective strapping for this game. A combination of the wider dearth of midfield options and Shelvey’s good form has seen him re-enter the England debate of late and his outswinging corner put Southampton under immediate pressure, with Christian Atsu shooting into the side-netting. Although Southampton were largely dominant in possession, Newcastle carried the greater initial goal threat with their quick counter-attacks and soon took a deserved lead. Van Dijk had missed a simple chance to clear and his team were punished. Joselu’s effort was initially blocked by Maya Yoshida, but the ball then bounced in front of Isaac Hayden. The former Arsenal midfielder unleashed a powerful low shot towards the centre of the goal that was sufficient to beat Forster, who could not recover his footing. Manolo Gabbiadini slots Southampton's first equaliser Credit: REUTERS/Eddie Keogh With Lascelles vocally organising his team-mates, the match soon settled into a pattern of Southampton’s possession being negated by Newcastle’s defensive organisation. Dusan Tadic had both a shot and a header go narrowly wide while Van Dijk himself did beat goalkeeper Rob Elliot only for his glancing header to drift over. Southampton were clearly instructed to move the ball more directly in what Pellegrino called a “chaotic” second half but were almost 2-0 behind within seconds of the restart. Van Dijk had again failed to clear, allowing Ayoze Perez and Joselu to combine before Forster was rescued only by the crossbar. Southampton had failed to score in eight out of their last nine league games at St Mary’s – a statistic that had largely mirrored the poor form of Gabbiadini – but he did then deliver spectacularly. The Italy striker had chased a long down-field clearance to the edge of the by-line and looked certain simply to pick out the best option among those team-mates who had surged forward in support. Gabbiadini did turn but, rather than pass to the onrushing Cedric Soares, he simply dribbled the ball infield before again swivelling and brilliantly directing a low, left-footed shot back inside Elliot’s near-post. Parity, however, was to last less than 90 seconds. Southampton again lost their collective concentration, allowing Perez to sprint into the space between Yoshida and Van Dijk and immediately shoot. Forster should have gathered the ball but his save rebounded straight back into the path of Perez, who drilled his shot inside the post. Pellegrino reacted by bringing on both Steven Davis and Sofiane Boufal but, for Newcastle, the second equaliser was largely self-inflicted. Shane Long was chasing a long, bouncing ball forward but running away from goal when Florian Lejeun upended him with an unnecessary and clumsy lunge. Referee Kevin Friend rightly pointed to the penalty spot and Gabbiadini, whose confidence seemed suddenly to have returned following his first goal, finished emphatically into the top corner. Both teams could have won it in the final minutes, although a calf injury to Dwight Gayle once Beneitz had used up his substitutes clearly limited Newcastle. “We were expecting to use his pace but we played the last 10 minutes with 10 players,” said Benitez. “The players had do everything for the team; they are doing a great job.” 5:56PM Full time If Lejeune had not made that needless foul in the box, Newcastle would be heading home with all the points. Saints looked cooked at that point and though he almost made amends with that late bullet header, Davis saved the day. Kevin Friend's leniency with DeAndre Yedlin, who should have been sent off, cost Southampton the chance to exploit numerical supremacy.  5:54PM Time on ball (at full time) Possession: Southampton vs Newcastle 5:54PM Average touch positions (full time) Average touch positions (full time) 5:53PM 90+6 min Newcastle corner when Murphy's shot is arrowed towards the left post. Van Dijk sticks out a leg to knock it behind. Van Dijk heads Ritchie's corner out of the box and the ref blows for time.  5:52PM 90+5 min Boufal hits a long ball from the left-back position that Newcastle mop up and move back up the right. Yedlin hits an outswinging cross into the box. Southampton clear.  5:51PM 90+4 min Van Dijk saves Yoshida from a terrible error when he lets the ball run. He sprints in to stop Gayle having a clear run on goal from 25 yards.  5:50PM 90+2 min Both should have gone off after treatment and then come back on but Friend allows them to stay on for the re-start which provokes much gesticulation from Pellegrino and jeers from the crowd: 'You don't know what you're doing' etc.  5:48PM 90+1 min They sweep the ball forward quickly but the attack ends when Ritchie and Hayden take each other out with a clash of heads. On rush the medical staff who eventually give them the all-clear.  5:47PM 89 min Newcastle break from the goalkick and win a corner. Lejeune evades Austin with a clever run to meet it and powers a header towards the bottom left corner. Davis, having been stationed there, keeps his cool to clear off the line and Saints break.  5:45PM 87 min Lejeune slides in to block Cedric's cross out for a corner and prevents Gabbiadini having a sniff of a hat-trick at the near post. The corner is caught comfortably by Elliott who then takes a knee ... but not in that way.  5:44PM 86 min Both sides still going for it. Bertrand and Boufal combine to free the left-back up the left. His cross is too close to Elliott who dives out to slap it away. Shelvey pouncs on the breaking ball as if time has stood still and passes it to Yedlin but his clearance is hounded down by Lemina and Boufal. The rapid counter breaks down with a foul.  5:42PM 85 min Hayden slips and goes in hard on Van Dijk but gets away with a second booking because it was evidently an accident on his part.  5:41PM 83 min Long goes off for Southampton and Austin, to loud cheers, comes on. Atsu is replaced by Jacob Murphy for Newcastle.  5:40PM 82 min Newcastle free-kick on the right by the junction of the 18-yard line and the vertical line of the penalty box. Ritchie scoops it beyond the far post, looking for the curler.  5:36PM 80 min A couple of bookings, for Gabbiadini kicking the ball away, and Hayden for going over the ball and planting his studs (while sliding) on to the top of Lemina's foot.  5:35PM 78 min Newcastle have a chance at the other end, just like after Saints' first equaliser, but Lejeune, on the end of the pumped cross, attempts to redeem himself instead of nodding it to the unmarked Gayle who gives him a mouthful. Forster's easy catch inspires sarcastic cheers.  5:33PM Time on ball (60 - 75 min) Possession: Southampton vs Newcastle 5:33PM 76 min Gabbiadini trots up and absolutely larrups his left-foot shot into the top right corner, directing it so perfectly that he made the inside of the side-netting billow.  5:33PM GOAL! Southampton level it up with a goal from Manolo Gabbiadini: it's 2-2. Southampton 2 - 2 Newcastle (Manolo Gabbiadini, 75 min) 5:32PM Gabbiadini converts it It's 2-2.  5:32PM Saints have a penalty Long was going away from goal, Lejeune stuck out a leg to give him a hurdle and he fell over it, as was his duty.  5:31PM 74 min Gayle has a sprint down the right into space but only Atsu is up with him and his cross doesn't find him.  5:30PM 72 min Decent near-post cross from Cedric after he robbed Atsu but no one had made the run there. I don't known if he deserves criticism for not looking up or Long and Gabbiadini for not splitting and one of them going there but I err towards the latter.  5:28PM 70 min Boufal concedes a cheap free-kick by dragging down Ritchie on the right, 10 yards up from the corner flag. He bends it into the box with his left-foot where it is glanced on to the back of it and Lejeune, glorying in the space and opportunity, overzealously whacks a rotten shot into orbit.  5:25PM 69 min Newcastle sub: Gayle on for Joselu.  5:25PM 68 min Gabbiadini cushions a pass back to goal 18 yards out towards Long after controlling a 50-yard pass but Merino steps in to nick it away.  5:24PM 67 min Saints substitution: Romeu off, Davis on.  5:23PM 66 min Bertrand and Boufal make progress up the left, square it to Lemina. The crowd screams 'Shoot!' so he does, straight into a thicket of blue-socked legs at the edge of the box. 5:22PM 64 min The corner from the left is swung in by Ritchie and Tadic, surprised to head it after it just beat Van Dijk's leap, miscues it across goal. Joselu attempts to pounce but Saints bundle it away.  5:20PM 62 min The crowd attempts to rouse Southampton with an anthem. It doesn't work instantly as Newcastle break and Ritchie shoots from 25 yards. His shot is blocked and goes out for a corner, giving Benitez an opportunity to withdraw Ayoze Perez and send on Mikel Merino.  5:18PM Time on ball (45 - 60 min) Possession: Southampton vs Newcastle 5:18PM 60 min Friend penalises Gabbiadini for grabbing Lejeune's shirt in the box and hurling himself on to the deck.  5:17PM 59 min Cedric seizes the initiative to have a shot from 20 yards but it's scuffed straight at Elliott.  5:16PM 58 min Forster appears shot, flapping at a dipping left-wing cross from Atsu that thankfully for him sails beyond the goal. Boufal has a couple of direct dribbles in a minute but can't find a away past Yedlin yet. 5:14PM 56 min Rafa Benitez is a fine manager but I still feel he deserves damnation for the reintroduction of the managerial waistcoat. Saints make a sub: Boufal on for Redmond.  5:13PM 54 min Yedlin, who has been booked, gets away with a sliding lunge that pole-axes Redmond. He was nowhere near the ball and should have been dispatched. Instead Kevin Friend let him walk.  5:12PM 53 min Having worked so hard to get back into it and score a rare home goal, Saints have thrown it away.  5:11PM 50 min Forster fails to hang on to a low shot from Peres at the near post and parries it straight back to him. They say no second invitation necessary but it was a second invitation and Ayoze Perez smacked it past the floundering, foundering Fraser Forster.  Ayoze Perez puts Newcastle back into the lead Credit: Clive Rose/Getty Images   5:08PM 48 min Gabbiadini traps a long diagonal quite heavily and it takes him towards the byline. Manquillo tries to hold him up but he turns, skedaddles back towards his own goal. Cedric's run distracts a defender or two and allows Gabbiadini to stroke in a low shot into the bottom corner.  5:08PM GOAL! 1-2! Newcastle are back in the lead with a goal from Ayoze Pérez. Southampton 1 - 2 Newcastle (Ayoze Pérez, 51 min) 5:07PM GOAL! An equaliser from Manolo Gabbiadini for Southampton makes it 1-1. Southampton 1 - 1 Newcastle (Manolo Gabbiadini, 49 min) Credit: Julian Finney/Getty Images   5:07PM The shot count is similar Southampton have attempted nine shots so far, compared to six for Newcastle. Southampton vs Newcastle shots on goal 5:06PM Gabbiadini equalises And it's a solo slalom effort.  5:06PM 47 min They switch it to the right where Ritchie passes to Perez who diddles the dawdling Van Dijk and skelps in a low cross. Joselu sticks out a leg to flick it towards the far post and it loops up. Forster moves across slowly in a bit of a panic but can't get there a sit hits the post and rebounds out. Shelvey sprints forward to retrieve and goes for shot-cross that scares the pants off Forster. Backpedalling, he swipes it behind for a corner in fear of it dropping in.  5:03PM 46 min Newcastle kick off, make ground up the left and earn a throw-in.  4:50PM Half time Southampton have created two outstanding chances and four or five meh ones. Lemina is a hell of a player and really should be playing higher to test Shelvey instead of sweeping up. But the pace has been too pedestrian at times and Newcastle, who are well organised at the back and playing to a well-understood plan on the counter, have looked pretty comfortable with everything bar the left-wing crosses.  Isaac Hayden celebrates scoring Newcastle's opening goal with DeAndre Yedlin Credit: AFP PHOTO / Glyn KIRK   4:47PM 45+1 min Redmond yanks Lascelles' shirt to concede a free-kick on halfway that Shelvey lifts into the box but as it is in midair, the People's Friend blows his Acme Thunderer.  4:47PM Time on ball (first half) Possession: Southampton vs Newcastle 4:47PM Average touch positions (half time) Average touch positions (half time) 4:45PM 45 min The board goes up for an extra minute of possession fun and high jinks from Southampton.  4:43PM 42 min One pass too many from Redmond instead of shooting creates a harder opportunity for Long with a defender breathing down his neck. His shot deflects off Lejeune and balloons towards Elliott who gets there before the lunging Gabbiadini. Redmond should have had a dig himself from 18 yards.  4:41PM 41 min Much better cross from Bertrand from the breakdown as he whips one in from the left and Tadic meets it 10 yards out at the near post. Brave block from Lascelles diverts it out for a corner, from which Southampton plod back into their own half in pursuit of hollow possession dominance.  4:39PM 39 min Lascelles yanks Long over with an arm around his shoulders as they went up for a header 30 yards from the Toon goal. Bertrand floats in a timid cross with no menace at all and Newcastle easily clear.  4:38PM 37 min Yoshida and Perez go up for a header, Perez arriving very late and bundling the centre-half over. Free-kick in the centre-circle.  4:36PM 36 min Saints play another pretty triangular routine down the right with Gabbiadini, Cedric and Tadic. But one mistake on the high wire act of close intricate passing in a constrained space invites failure and so it proves with a minimally overhit pass.  4:34PM 34 min Redmond has a heavy first touch today. New boots? Nike Concretos?  4:33PM 32 min Long comes out to the right to make a triangle with Cedric and Lemina who sweeps the ball across the field where Lejeune steps out of the line to disrupt the attack and send Saints on the retreat.  Mario Lemina is Saints' shining light Credit: Clive Rose/Getty Images   4:31PM 30 min Lemina again snaps into a tackle in the centre of the field to thwart a Newcastle counter, brushing Perez off the ball and darting forward until he was fouled.  4:30PM Time on ball (15 - 30 min) Possession: Southampton vs Newcastle 4:30PM Southampton can't make their domination of the ball count Southampton vs Newcastle 4:29PM 28 min Redmond hasn't mastered the training ground free-kick and is drowned in boos when he passes it straight to Atsu but a tigerish tackle from Lemina saves the day. He moves the ball out to the left where Yoshida takes it on and bends in a superb cross with his left-foot that parts Gabbiadini's hair with the backdraft but was just an inch too high to ram home.  4:27PM 27 min Van Dijk and Southampton are back to their sterile crossfield passing for a phase until they move it forward and earn a free-kick for Manquillo's foul 35 yards out.  4:26PM 24 min Perez is penalised for a trip on Yoshida, for standing on his heel. The linesman didn't flag as Perez exploited his advantage by sprinting clear through on goal but Friend intervened.  Hayden rams in his shot Credit: John Walton/PA   4:24PM 22 min Southampton attack quickly from the kick-off and Gabbiadini gets into a tangle with Lejeune who, with both of them on the floor, manages to hook the ball out for a corner. Elliott flaps at the centre misses it completely and Van Dijk steers a header wide of the gaping net. Should have been the equaliser. Saints have missed two golden headed chances.  Miss: Southampton 0 - 1 Newcastle (Virgil van Dijk, 22 min)   4:22PM 21 min The loopy cross came in from the left, Atsu met it on the volley and walloped it into the defender at point blank range. Forster went down to save the shot that didn't get through to him and couldn't get up quick enough when Hayden thundered in the rebound from the D.   4:20PM GOAL! Isaac Hayden scores for Newcastle to make it 0-1! Southampton 0 - 1 Newcastle (Isaac Hayden, 20 min) 4:20PM Newcastle take the lead Hayden rams in a shot from 18 yards. Forster was wrong-footed.  4:19PM 19 min Forster, who I've long thought pedestrian with his footwork, has no sense of urgency when receiving a back pass. He doesn't see Perez hounding into the space between them and shanks his clearance into him and it bounces harmlessly.  4:18PM 17 min Tadic misses a golden chance at the back post. Van Dijk made the chance with a Hansen-esque gallop upfield and a pass out to Bertrand on the left. He threads a pass on to Redmond who stands up the ball to the back stick. Tadic tries to head it back across goal and over Elliott but bludgeons it over the bar.  Miss: Southampton 0 - 0 Newcastle (Dusan Tadic, 16 min)   4:15PM Neither Southampton or Newcastle are testing the goalkeepers so far Tense opening quarter of an hour at St. Mary's Stadium, as Southampton and Newcastle struggle to get shots on goal Southampton vs Newcastle shots on goal 4:15PM Time on ball (0 - 15 min) Possession: Southampton vs Newcastle 4:15PM 15 min Sharp turn from Tadic when found by Cedric's pass. He spins Hayden and spanks a left-foot riser over the bar from 25 yards.  4:14PM Southampton have their first strike at goal Southampton respond to the earlier Newcastle effort with their first shot of the game. Southampton vs Newcastle shots on goal 4:14PM 13 min Redmond has  a saunter up the left but when he cuts it back for Romeu he overhits it and Newcastle break through Hayden who passes to Atsu. The left-sider hares up the middle but fluffs his simple pass to Joselu.  4:11PM 11 min Romeu bodyslams Shelvey to concede a free-kick, running into him late after Shelvey had played a pass. The referee doesn't book him. Everyone's allowed one free hit on Shelvey it seems  ... and not without reason.  4:10PM 10 min Shelvey takes to the back post where Atsu meets it after a diversion and crashes a left-foot shot into the side-netting from 10 yards and a tight if not right angle.  4:09PM 8 min Newcastle play it back to Elliot who chips it up to halfway where Manquillo cushions it on his chest and switches over to the right. Yedlin nods it on to Ritchie who hooks a bouncing ball over Bertrand for Perez who advances towards the box but wastes a cross. He hits it too close to Van Dijk and Southampton hustle it out for a corner. 4:07PM 7 min Lemina keeps dropping between the centre-backs, who split, and the fullbacks bomb on when Southampton build from the back. He looked more influential playing higher up at Selhurst Park.  4:06PM 5 min First Newcastle attack with Manquillo and Atsu combining up the left but the left-back's lack of an adequate left foot means his control as he skirted the whitewash lets him down and the ball dribbles out for a Saints throw.  4:05PM 4 min Southampton continue to hog the ball, stroking it around, not being pressed in the first 60 yards. Yoshida mixes it up with another raking diagonal for Bertrand that Yedlin and Ritchie deal with competently.  4:03PM 2 min That's better, a long ball from Yoshida from right to left, headed on by Long to Redmond who dinks in a dipping cross that Manquillo, covering diligently and dutifully, heads out for a throw-in.  4:01PM 1 min Saints kick off, move it back to Yoshida and pass it from left to right and back again before Van Dijk launches a long diagonal up the right for Tadic who turns and heads back towards his own goal. Newcastle haven't had a touch but it's a parody of possession football so far.  4:00PM Time for the teams to huddle Newcastle are in blue. We'll be off in a few seconds.  3:45PM A word from some sponsors Best-priced accumulators | New customer offers   3:43PM This Saints kit Is very Steve Moran but I can't help but dislike it. Stripes > bibs.  Southampton Forster; Cedric, Van Dijk, Yoshida, Bertrand; Romeu, Lemina; Tadic, Gabbiadini, Redmond, Long.  Subs Hoedt, Davis, Austin, McCarthy, Ward-Prowse, Boufal, McQueen.  Fans gather at St Mary's Credit: MATTHEW CHILDS/Action Images via Reuters Newcastle Elliot, Yedlin, Lascelles, Lejeune, Manquillo; Shelvey; Ritchie, Hayden, Perez, Atsu; Joselu.  Subs Clark, Murphy, Gayle, Diame, Merino, Darlow, Jesus Gamez.  Referee Kevin has a Friend (in Jesus). 3:38PM St Mary's Has not been a happy away trip for Newcastle United recently:  their last four visits have all ended in comprehensive defeat - 2-0 in 2012-13, 4-0 the following season, 4-0 again in 2014-15 and 3-1 during the Toon's relegation season. You have to go back to September 2004 (Southampton's relegation season) for Newcastle's last victory there and it came with a forward line of Craig Bellamy, Patrick Kluivert and Alan Shearer. None of them scored, however, and they left 2-1 winners by virtue of an own goal from David Prutton and one from the right-back Stephen Carr.  3:24PM Ch-ch-ch-changes Southampton bring in Manolo Gabbiadini for Steven Davis in their quest for a second home victory of the season. Newcastle draft in Florian Lejeune for Ciaran Clark at centre-half and Isaac Hayden for Mikel Merino as alterations to the starting XI for the draw with Liverpool. 3:19PM Team news The teams are in! Here's how #SaintsFC line-up to face #NUFC this afternoon in the #PL: pic.twitter.com/X0rNFJlXUJ— Southampton FC (@SouthamptonFC) October 15, 2017 TEAM NEWS: Here's how Newcastle United will line up at @SouthamptonFC in the @premierleague this afternoon (kick-off 4pm BST). #NUFCpic.twitter.com/hgz8tFwbKI— Newcastle United FC (@NUFC) October 15, 2017   3:16PM Pre-match package What is it? It's the Premier League clash between Southampton and Newcastle. When is it? Today, so Sunday, October 15. What time is kick-off? At 4pm. What TV channel is it on? You can watch live coverage on Sky Sports Premier League or Sky Sports Main Event channel. Alternatively, bookmark this page and follow the latest with our rolling blog. Shane Long is expected to return for Southampton Credit: Reuters What are the odds? Southampton to win 20/23 Draw 13/5 Newcastle to win 15/4 What's the team news? Shane Long is expected to be fit to play for Southampton despite the forward missing Ireland's World Cup qualifying win against Wales on Monday because of a hip injury. Newcastle's Jonjo Shelvey could play wearing a special cast, having broken a finger while trying to break up a training ground disagreement last week. Defenders Paul Dummett and Massadio Haidara remain sidelined. Mauricio Pellegrino hopes to get one over his former manager Credit: Reuters What have they been saying? Rafa Benitez on coming up against Mauricio Pellegrino, who knows him better than most having both played for and coached with him. “It will be difficult to surprise him. “It’s a strange feeling. Especially Mauricio, because he was my player and I signed him for Liverpool too because I had a lot of confidence in him. And after he was my assistant for the same reason. “He knows everything about me because he was my player and assistant. He has an advantage, but at the same time we know him really well too. It is a special situation. If you wanted to say something or change something, he would know already.”

Southampton 2 Newcastle 2: Manolo Gabbiadini pulls Saints back from the brink

It was Rafael Benitez who gave Mauricio Pellegrino his first big opportunity in coaching and it would be the apprentice rather than the old master here who had the last word. Benitez’s Newcastle United had twice got themselves into a match-winning position that would have lifted them to level on points with Chelsea in fifth but were twice frustrated following two goals in 28 minutes from Manolo Gabbiadini. With Southampton struggling to score of late – and further unconvincing defensive performances by goalkeeper Fraser Forster and centre-back Virgil van Dijk – it left Newcastle ultimately more disappointed with a point. That very fact, though, was illustrative both of their obvious improvement under manager Rafael Benitez and how Southampton are still waiting for any really tangible uplift following the decision to replace Claude Puel with Pellegrino. Their players even faced boos at half-time, although the subsequent applause that greeted the final whistle underlined how the jury is very much still out on the new man. There is no such debate over Benitez who, just as he did at Liverpool, is skilfully galvanising a fervent fanbase that can be so pivotal to the club’s success. More than 3,000 Newcastle supporters had made the 700-mile round-trip to Hampshire for this 4pm Sunday kick-off and their relentless chanting of Benitez’s name was indicative of the momentum he has created even amid the longer-term uncertainty over the club’s ownership. Isaac Hayden scores Newcastle's first with a crisp shot Credit:  John Walton/PA “I am disappointed because we could have won but happy because of a point away against a good team,” said Benitez. “We are learning from every game – there were a couple of mistakes but I cannot complain or blame my players. I am not surprised by where we are. The spirit is very good and everybody in the city is behind the team.” Even a training-ground fight between Jamaal Lascelles and Mo Diame does not seem to have undermined that unity, though Jonjo Shelvey’s attempts to separate them left him with a broken finger and needing protective strapping for this game. A combination of the wider dearth of midfield options and Shelvey’s good form has seen him re-enter the England debate of late and his outswinging corner put Southampton under immediate pressure, with Christian Atsu shooting into the side-netting. Although Southampton were largely dominant in possession, Newcastle carried the greater initial goal threat with their quick counter-attacks and soon took a deserved lead. Van Dijk had missed a simple chance to clear and his team were punished. Joselu’s effort was initially blocked by Maya Yoshida, but the ball then bounced in front of Isaac Hayden. The former Arsenal midfielder unleashed a powerful low shot towards the centre of the goal that was sufficient to beat Forster, who could not recover his footing. Manolo Gabbiadini slots Southampton's first equaliser Credit: REUTERS/Eddie Keogh With Lascelles vocally organising his team-mates, the match soon settled into a pattern of Southampton’s possession being negated by Newcastle’s defensive organisation. Dusan Tadic had both a shot and a header go narrowly wide while Van Dijk himself did beat goalkeeper Rob Elliot only for his glancing header to drift over. Southampton were clearly instructed to move the ball more directly in what Pellegrino called a “chaotic” second half but were almost 2-0 behind within seconds of the restart. Van Dijk had again failed to clear, allowing Ayoze Perez and Joselu to combine before Forster was rescued only by the crossbar. Southampton had failed to score in eight out of their last nine league games at St Mary’s – a statistic that had largely mirrored the poor form of Gabbiadini – but he did then deliver spectacularly. The Italy striker had chased a long down-field clearance to the edge of the by-line and looked certain simply to pick out the best option among those team-mates who had surged forward in support. Gabbiadini did turn but, rather than pass to the onrushing Cedric Soares, he simply dribbled the ball infield before again swivelling and brilliantly directing a low, left-footed shot back inside Elliot’s near-post. Parity, however, was to last less than 90 seconds. Southampton again lost their collective concentration, allowing Perez to sprint into the space between Yoshida and Van Dijk and immediately shoot. Forster should have gathered the ball but his save rebounded straight back into the path of Perez, who drilled his shot inside the post. Pellegrino reacted by bringing on both Steven Davis and Sofiane Boufal but, for Newcastle, the second equaliser was largely self-inflicted. Shane Long was chasing a long, bouncing ball forward but running away from goal when Florian Lejeun upended him with an unnecessary and clumsy lunge. Referee Kevin Friend rightly pointed to the penalty spot and Gabbiadini, whose confidence seemed suddenly to have returned following his first goal, finished emphatically into the top corner. Both teams could have won it in the final minutes, although a calf injury to Dwight Gayle once Beneitz had used up his substitutes clearly limited Newcastle. “We were expecting to use his pace but we played the last 10 minutes with 10 players,” said Benitez. “The players had do everything for the team; they are doing a great job.” 5:56PM Full time If Lejeune had not made that needless foul in the box, Newcastle would be heading home with all the points. Saints looked cooked at that point and though he almost made amends with that late bullet header, Davis saved the day. Kevin Friend's leniency with DeAndre Yedlin, who should have been sent off, cost Southampton the chance to exploit numerical supremacy.  5:54PM Time on ball (at full time) Possession: Southampton vs Newcastle 5:54PM Average touch positions (full time) Average touch positions (full time) 5:53PM 90+6 min Newcastle corner when Murphy's shot is arrowed towards the left post. Van Dijk sticks out a leg to knock it behind. Van Dijk heads Ritchie's corner out of the box and the ref blows for time.  5:52PM 90+5 min Boufal hits a long ball from the left-back position that Newcastle mop up and move back up the right. Yedlin hits an outswinging cross into the box. Southampton clear.  5:51PM 90+4 min Van Dijk saves Yoshida from a terrible error when he lets the ball run. He sprints in to stop Gayle having a clear run on goal from 25 yards.  5:50PM 90+2 min Both should have gone off after treatment and then come back on but Friend allows them to stay on for the re-start which provokes much gesticulation from Pellegrino and jeers from the crowd: 'You don't know what you're doing' etc.  5:48PM 90+1 min They sweep the ball forward quickly but the attack ends when Ritchie and Hayden take each other out with a clash of heads. On rush the medical staff who eventually give them the all-clear.  5:47PM 89 min Newcastle break from the goalkick and win a corner. Lejeune evades Austin with a clever run to meet it and powers a header towards the bottom left corner. Davis, having been stationed there, keeps his cool to clear off the line and Saints break.  5:45PM 87 min Lejeune slides in to block Cedric's cross out for a corner and prevents Gabbiadini having a sniff of a hat-trick at the near post. The corner is caught comfortably by Elliott who then takes a knee ... but not in that way.  5:44PM 86 min Both sides still going for it. Bertrand and Boufal combine to free the left-back up the left. His cross is too close to Elliott who dives out to slap it away. Shelvey pouncs on the breaking ball as if time has stood still and passes it to Yedlin but his clearance is hounded down by Lemina and Boufal. The rapid counter breaks down with a foul.  5:42PM 85 min Hayden slips and goes in hard on Van Dijk but gets away with a second booking because it was evidently an accident on his part.  5:41PM 83 min Long goes off for Southampton and Austin, to loud cheers, comes on. Atsu is replaced by Jacob Murphy for Newcastle.  5:40PM 82 min Newcastle free-kick on the right by the junction of the 18-yard line and the vertical line of the penalty box. Ritchie scoops it beyond the far post, looking for the curler.  5:36PM 80 min A couple of bookings, for Gabbiadini kicking the ball away, and Hayden for going over the ball and planting his studs (while sliding) on to the top of Lemina's foot.  5:35PM 78 min Newcastle have a chance at the other end, just like after Saints' first equaliser, but Lejeune, on the end of the pumped cross, attempts to redeem himself instead of nodding it to the unmarked Gayle who gives him a mouthful. Forster's easy catch inspires sarcastic cheers.  5:33PM Time on ball (60 - 75 min) Possession: Southampton vs Newcastle 5:33PM 76 min Gabbiadini trots up and absolutely larrups his left-foot shot into the top right corner, directing it so perfectly that he made the inside of the side-netting billow.  5:33PM GOAL! Southampton level it up with a goal from Manolo Gabbiadini: it's 2-2. Southampton 2 - 2 Newcastle (Manolo Gabbiadini, 75 min) 5:32PM Gabbiadini converts it It's 2-2.  5:32PM Saints have a penalty Long was going away from goal, Lejeune stuck out a leg to give him a hurdle and he fell over it, as was his duty.  5:31PM 74 min Gayle has a sprint down the right into space but only Atsu is up with him and his cross doesn't find him.  5:30PM 72 min Decent near-post cross from Cedric after he robbed Atsu but no one had made the run there. I don't known if he deserves criticism for not looking up or Long and Gabbiadini for not splitting and one of them going there but I err towards the latter.  5:28PM 70 min Boufal concedes a cheap free-kick by dragging down Ritchie on the right, 10 yards up from the corner flag. He bends it into the box with his left-foot where it is glanced on to the back of it and Lejeune, glorying in the space and opportunity, overzealously whacks a rotten shot into orbit.  5:25PM 69 min Newcastle sub: Gayle on for Joselu.  5:25PM 68 min Gabbiadini cushions a pass back to goal 18 yards out towards Long after controlling a 50-yard pass but Merino steps in to nick it away.  5:24PM 67 min Saints substitution: Romeu off, Davis on.  5:23PM 66 min Bertrand and Boufal make progress up the left, square it to Lemina. The crowd screams 'Shoot!' so he does, straight into a thicket of blue-socked legs at the edge of the box. 5:22PM 64 min The corner from the left is swung in by Ritchie and Tadic, surprised to head it after it just beat Van Dijk's leap, miscues it across goal. Joselu attempts to pounce but Saints bundle it away.  5:20PM 62 min The crowd attempts to rouse Southampton with an anthem. It doesn't work instantly as Newcastle break and Ritchie shoots from 25 yards. His shot is blocked and goes out for a corner, giving Benitez an opportunity to withdraw Ayoze Perez and send on Mikel Merino.  5:18PM Time on ball (45 - 60 min) Possession: Southampton vs Newcastle 5:18PM 60 min Friend penalises Gabbiadini for grabbing Lejeune's shirt in the box and hurling himself on to the deck.  5:17PM 59 min Cedric seizes the initiative to have a shot from 20 yards but it's scuffed straight at Elliott.  5:16PM 58 min Forster appears shot, flapping at a dipping left-wing cross from Atsu that thankfully for him sails beyond the goal. Boufal has a couple of direct dribbles in a minute but can't find a away past Yedlin yet. 5:14PM 56 min Rafa Benitez is a fine manager but I still feel he deserves damnation for the reintroduction of the managerial waistcoat. Saints make a sub: Boufal on for Redmond.  5:13PM 54 min Yedlin, who has been booked, gets away with a sliding lunge that pole-axes Redmond. He was nowhere near the ball and should have been dispatched. Instead Kevin Friend let him walk.  5:12PM 53 min Having worked so hard to get back into it and score a rare home goal, Saints have thrown it away.  5:11PM 50 min Forster fails to hang on to a low shot from Peres at the near post and parries it straight back to him. They say no second invitation necessary but it was a second invitation and Ayoze Perez smacked it past the floundering, foundering Fraser Forster.  Ayoze Perez puts Newcastle back into the lead Credit: Clive Rose/Getty Images   5:08PM 48 min Gabbiadini traps a long diagonal quite heavily and it takes him towards the byline. Manquillo tries to hold him up but he turns, skedaddles back towards his own goal. Cedric's run distracts a defender or two and allows Gabbiadini to stroke in a low shot into the bottom corner.  5:08PM GOAL! 1-2! Newcastle are back in the lead with a goal from Ayoze Pérez. Southampton 1 - 2 Newcastle (Ayoze Pérez, 51 min) 5:07PM GOAL! An equaliser from Manolo Gabbiadini for Southampton makes it 1-1. Southampton 1 - 1 Newcastle (Manolo Gabbiadini, 49 min) Credit: Julian Finney/Getty Images   5:07PM The shot count is similar Southampton have attempted nine shots so far, compared to six for Newcastle. Southampton vs Newcastle shots on goal 5:06PM Gabbiadini equalises And it's a solo slalom effort.  5:06PM 47 min They switch it to the right where Ritchie passes to Perez who diddles the dawdling Van Dijk and skelps in a low cross. Joselu sticks out a leg to flick it towards the far post and it loops up. Forster moves across slowly in a bit of a panic but can't get there a sit hits the post and rebounds out. Shelvey sprints forward to retrieve and goes for shot-cross that scares the pants off Forster. Backpedalling, he swipes it behind for a corner in fear of it dropping in.  5:03PM 46 min Newcastle kick off, make ground up the left and earn a throw-in.  4:50PM Half time Southampton have created two outstanding chances and four or five meh ones. Lemina is a hell of a player and really should be playing higher to test Shelvey instead of sweeping up. But the pace has been too pedestrian at times and Newcastle, who are well organised at the back and playing to a well-understood plan on the counter, have looked pretty comfortable with everything bar the left-wing crosses.  Isaac Hayden celebrates scoring Newcastle's opening goal with DeAndre Yedlin Credit: AFP PHOTO / Glyn KIRK   4:47PM 45+1 min Redmond yanks Lascelles' shirt to concede a free-kick on halfway that Shelvey lifts into the box but as it is in midair, the People's Friend blows his Acme Thunderer.  4:47PM Time on ball (first half) Possession: Southampton vs Newcastle 4:47PM Average touch positions (half time) Average touch positions (half time) 4:45PM 45 min The board goes up for an extra minute of possession fun and high jinks from Southampton.  4:43PM 42 min One pass too many from Redmond instead of shooting creates a harder opportunity for Long with a defender breathing down his neck. His shot deflects off Lejeune and balloons towards Elliott who gets there before the lunging Gabbiadini. Redmond should have had a dig himself from 18 yards.  4:41PM 41 min Much better cross from Bertrand from the breakdown as he whips one in from the left and Tadic meets it 10 yards out at the near post. Brave block from Lascelles diverts it out for a corner, from which Southampton plod back into their own half in pursuit of hollow possession dominance.  4:39PM 39 min Lascelles yanks Long over with an arm around his shoulders as they went up for a header 30 yards from the Toon goal. Bertrand floats in a timid cross with no menace at all and Newcastle easily clear.  4:38PM 37 min Yoshida and Perez go up for a header, Perez arriving very late and bundling the centre-half over. Free-kick in the centre-circle.  4:36PM 36 min Saints play another pretty triangular routine down the right with Gabbiadini, Cedric and Tadic. But one mistake on the high wire act of close intricate passing in a constrained space invites failure and so it proves with a minimally overhit pass.  4:34PM 34 min Redmond has a heavy first touch today. New boots? Nike Concretos?  4:33PM 32 min Long comes out to the right to make a triangle with Cedric and Lemina who sweeps the ball across the field where Lejeune steps out of the line to disrupt the attack and send Saints on the retreat.  Mario Lemina is Saints' shining light Credit: Clive Rose/Getty Images   4:31PM 30 min Lemina again snaps into a tackle in the centre of the field to thwart a Newcastle counter, brushing Perez off the ball and darting forward until he was fouled.  4:30PM Time on ball (15 - 30 min) Possession: Southampton vs Newcastle 4:30PM Southampton can't make their domination of the ball count Southampton vs Newcastle 4:29PM 28 min Redmond hasn't mastered the training ground free-kick and is drowned in boos when he passes it straight to Atsu but a tigerish tackle from Lemina saves the day. He moves the ball out to the left where Yoshida takes it on and bends in a superb cross with his left-foot that parts Gabbiadini's hair with the backdraft but was just an inch too high to ram home.  4:27PM 27 min Van Dijk and Southampton are back to their sterile crossfield passing for a phase until they move it forward and earn a free-kick for Manquillo's foul 35 yards out.  4:26PM 24 min Perez is penalised for a trip on Yoshida, for standing on his heel. The linesman didn't flag as Perez exploited his advantage by sprinting clear through on goal but Friend intervened.  Hayden rams in his shot Credit: John Walton/PA   4:24PM 22 min Southampton attack quickly from the kick-off and Gabbiadini gets into a tangle with Lejeune who, with both of them on the floor, manages to hook the ball out for a corner. Elliott flaps at the centre misses it completely and Van Dijk steers a header wide of the gaping net. Should have been the equaliser. Saints have missed two golden headed chances.  Miss: Southampton 0 - 1 Newcastle (Virgil van Dijk, 22 min)   4:22PM 21 min The loopy cross came in from the left, Atsu met it on the volley and walloped it into the defender at point blank range. Forster went down to save the shot that didn't get through to him and couldn't get up quick enough when Hayden thundered in the rebound from the D.   4:20PM GOAL! Isaac Hayden scores for Newcastle to make it 0-1! Southampton 0 - 1 Newcastle (Isaac Hayden, 20 min) 4:20PM Newcastle take the lead Hayden rams in a shot from 18 yards. Forster was wrong-footed.  4:19PM 19 min Forster, who I've long thought pedestrian with his footwork, has no sense of urgency when receiving a back pass. He doesn't see Perez hounding into the space between them and shanks his clearance into him and it bounces harmlessly.  4:18PM 17 min Tadic misses a golden chance at the back post. Van Dijk made the chance with a Hansen-esque gallop upfield and a pass out to Bertrand on the left. He threads a pass on to Redmond who stands up the ball to the back stick. Tadic tries to head it back across goal and over Elliott but bludgeons it over the bar.  Miss: Southampton 0 - 0 Newcastle (Dusan Tadic, 16 min)   4:15PM Neither Southampton or Newcastle are testing the goalkeepers so far Tense opening quarter of an hour at St. Mary's Stadium, as Southampton and Newcastle struggle to get shots on goal Southampton vs Newcastle shots on goal 4:15PM Time on ball (0 - 15 min) Possession: Southampton vs Newcastle 4:15PM 15 min Sharp turn from Tadic when found by Cedric's pass. He spins Hayden and spanks a left-foot riser over the bar from 25 yards.  4:14PM Southampton have their first strike at goal Southampton respond to the earlier Newcastle effort with their first shot of the game. Southampton vs Newcastle shots on goal 4:14PM 13 min Redmond has  a saunter up the left but when he cuts it back for Romeu he overhits it and Newcastle break through Hayden who passes to Atsu. The left-sider hares up the middle but fluffs his simple pass to Joselu.  4:11PM 11 min Romeu bodyslams Shelvey to concede a free-kick, running into him late after Shelvey had played a pass. The referee doesn't book him. Everyone's allowed one free hit on Shelvey it seems  ... and not without reason.  4:10PM 10 min Shelvey takes to the back post where Atsu meets it after a diversion and crashes a left-foot shot into the side-netting from 10 yards and a tight if not right angle.  4:09PM 8 min Newcastle play it back to Elliot who chips it up to halfway where Manquillo cushions it on his chest and switches over to the right. Yedlin nods it on to Ritchie who hooks a bouncing ball over Bertrand for Perez who advances towards the box but wastes a cross. He hits it too close to Van Dijk and Southampton hustle it out for a corner. 4:07PM 7 min Lemina keeps dropping between the centre-backs, who split, and the fullbacks bomb on when Southampton build from the back. He looked more influential playing higher up at Selhurst Park.  4:06PM 5 min First Newcastle attack with Manquillo and Atsu combining up the left but the left-back's lack of an adequate left foot means his control as he skirted the whitewash lets him down and the ball dribbles out for a Saints throw.  4:05PM 4 min Southampton continue to hog the ball, stroking it around, not being pressed in the first 60 yards. Yoshida mixes it up with another raking diagonal for Bertrand that Yedlin and Ritchie deal with competently.  4:03PM 2 min That's better, a long ball from Yoshida from right to left, headed on by Long to Redmond who dinks in a dipping cross that Manquillo, covering diligently and dutifully, heads out for a throw-in.  4:01PM 1 min Saints kick off, move it back to Yoshida and pass it from left to right and back again before Van Dijk launches a long diagonal up the right for Tadic who turns and heads back towards his own goal. Newcastle haven't had a touch but it's a parody of possession football so far.  4:00PM Time for the teams to huddle Newcastle are in blue. We'll be off in a few seconds.  3:45PM A word from some sponsors Best-priced accumulators | New customer offers   3:43PM This Saints kit Is very Steve Moran but I can't help but dislike it. Stripes > bibs.  Southampton Forster; Cedric, Van Dijk, Yoshida, Bertrand; Romeu, Lemina; Tadic, Gabbiadini, Redmond, Long.  Subs Hoedt, Davis, Austin, McCarthy, Ward-Prowse, Boufal, McQueen.  Fans gather at St Mary's Credit: MATTHEW CHILDS/Action Images via Reuters Newcastle Elliot, Yedlin, Lascelles, Lejeune, Manquillo; Shelvey; Ritchie, Hayden, Perez, Atsu; Joselu.  Subs Clark, Murphy, Gayle, Diame, Merino, Darlow, Jesus Gamez.  Referee Kevin has a Friend (in Jesus). 3:38PM St Mary's Has not been a happy away trip for Newcastle United recently:  their last four visits have all ended in comprehensive defeat - 2-0 in 2012-13, 4-0 the following season, 4-0 again in 2014-15 and 3-1 during the Toon's relegation season. You have to go back to September 2004 (Southampton's relegation season) for Newcastle's last victory there and it came with a forward line of Craig Bellamy, Patrick Kluivert and Alan Shearer. None of them scored, however, and they left 2-1 winners by virtue of an own goal from David Prutton and one from the right-back Stephen Carr.  3:24PM Ch-ch-ch-changes Southampton bring in Manolo Gabbiadini for Steven Davis in their quest for a second home victory of the season. Newcastle draft in Florian Lejeune for Ciaran Clark at centre-half and Isaac Hayden for Mikel Merino as alterations to the starting XI for the draw with Liverpool. 3:19PM Team news The teams are in! Here's how #SaintsFC line-up to face #NUFC this afternoon in the #PL: pic.twitter.com/X0rNFJlXUJ— Southampton FC (@SouthamptonFC) October 15, 2017 TEAM NEWS: Here's how Newcastle United will line up at @SouthamptonFC in the @premierleague this afternoon (kick-off 4pm BST). #NUFCpic.twitter.com/hgz8tFwbKI— Newcastle United FC (@NUFC) October 15, 2017   3:16PM Pre-match package What is it? It's the Premier League clash between Southampton and Newcastle. When is it? Today, so Sunday, October 15. What time is kick-off? At 4pm. What TV channel is it on? You can watch live coverage on Sky Sports Premier League or Sky Sports Main Event channel. Alternatively, bookmark this page and follow the latest with our rolling blog. Shane Long is expected to return for Southampton Credit: Reuters What are the odds? Southampton to win 20/23 Draw 13/5 Newcastle to win 15/4 What's the team news? Shane Long is expected to be fit to play for Southampton despite the forward missing Ireland's World Cup qualifying win against Wales on Monday because of a hip injury. Newcastle's Jonjo Shelvey could play wearing a special cast, having broken a finger while trying to break up a training ground disagreement last week. Defenders Paul Dummett and Massadio Haidara remain sidelined. Mauricio Pellegrino hopes to get one over his former manager Credit: Reuters What have they been saying? Rafa Benitez on coming up against Mauricio Pellegrino, who knows him better than most having both played for and coached with him. “It will be difficult to surprise him. “It’s a strange feeling. Especially Mauricio, because he was my player and I signed him for Liverpool too because I had a lot of confidence in him. And after he was my assistant for the same reason. “He knows everything about me because he was my player and assistant. He has an advantage, but at the same time we know him really well too. It is a special situation. If you wanted to say something or change something, he would know already.”

By using Yahoo you agree that Yahoo and partners may use Cookies for personalisation and other purposes