Sports Mole provides live coverage of the Premier League match between Southampton and Sunderland.
By Joe McPhee Filed: Saturday, October 18, 2014 at 14:04 UK
Last Updated: Saturday, October 18, 2014 at 18:01 UK
Good afternoon and welcome to live coverage of the Premier League game between Southampton and Sunderland here on Sports Mole.
The Saints never looked back after an early own goal from Santiago Vergini, with Graziano Pelle and Jack Cork making it 3-0 before half-time.
After the break, the home side went on a rampage with Pelle, Dusan Tadic, Victor Wanyama, Sadio Mane and a Liam Bridcutt own goal ensuring that it was a miserable afternoon for Gus Poyet's men.
Read how the action unfolded below.
2.05pmGood afternoon and welcome to live coverage of the Premier League clash between Southampton and Sunderland here on Sports Mole. As well as England got on in their Euro 2016 qualifiers, there's nothing quite like club football being back for the weekend!
2.08pmBefore the break, the Saints saw their run of four straight wins ended by former boss Mauricio Pochettino and Tottenham Hotspur. A Christian Eriksen goal won the clash for Spurs, and Southampton will be hoping to return to winning ways here at St Mary's this afternoon.
2.11pmMeanwhile, Sunderland finally registered their first win of the campaign, triumphing at home to Stoke City 3-1. Gus Poyet's forwards had failed to score in any previous game of the season, but a Steven Fletcher brace and one from Connor Wickham changed that and lifted the side to 13th position in the table.
2.12pmPoyet himself said the win put a different spin on what had previous been deemed a poor start to the season, with him saying he'd now rather focus on the fact that his team has lost just once in seven games so far.
Subs: Pantilimon, Bridcutt, Rodwell, A Johnson, Cabral, Mavrias, Graham.
2.23pmThe big news for Southampton is that although Senegalese winger Sadio Mane has made a promising start to his Southampton career, Ronald Koeman has opted to place him among the substitutes today after his international travels to Africa. Mane played 90 minutes during his sides' 1-0 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying defeat to Tunisia on Wednesday, so Koeman has clearly decided that he needs to recuperate with some time on the bench.
2.24pmKoeman is still without long-term absentees Jay Rodriguez, James Ward-Prowse and Sam Gallacher, but there is positive news in that defender Maya Yoshida is back on the bench.
2.26pmGraziano Pelle is the key man though, spearheading the attack for the hosts and fresh from scoring his first goal for Italy during last week's 1-0 win over Malta. The striker won the Barclay's Player of the Month award for September after scoring three goals in three games, while his boss picked up the Manager's equivalent award.
2.28pmFor the away team, full-back Billy Jones has been added to their injury list after picking up a muscle injury in a friendly for his club last week.
2.29pmJones joins fellow defender Sebastian Coates (thigh) and midfielder duo Emanuele Giaccherini (ankle) and Ricky Alvarez (knee) on the sidelines.
2.34pmWes Brown returns to the lineup in place of the missing Jones, but it's his ex-Manchester United teammate John O'Shea who has grabbed the headlines this week. The Republic of Ireland skipper scored a late leveller against World Cup winners Germany in midweek, celebrating his 100th cap for his country in style. The centre-half also signed a new deal with the Black Cats last weekend, so it's safe to say that he's had a pretty decent week.
2.41pmThe chaps from Sports Mole previewed this one earlier in the week - do you agree with their predictions?
2.44pmAs stated in the video, Southampton come into this one off the back of a disappointing 1-0 loss at Tottenham before the international break. Koeman will be looking for his team to bounce back today, and the odds are in their favour when you consider their form at St Mary's this term. From four games, the team are unbeaten, and Charlie Austin's goal for QPR in their previous home match is only one they've conceded on their own patch so far.
2.50pmYou can't rule Sunderland out though, with Poyet's side going four games unbeaten between these two teams last season. The two league matches both ended in score draws, but Sunderland were victorious in both the Capital One Cup and the FA Cup ties between the sides.
2.51pmPREDICTION: For that reason, I'm backing Sunderland to grab an unexpected draw here. With Fletcher and Wickham both on the scoresheet last time around, I think they're capable of earning their team a point, even though Southampton are the favourites today. 1-1.
2.55pmSunderland, in their change kit of all blue, are in the tunnel awaiting the arrival of the hosts. We're just five minutes away from kick-off here.
2.59pmReferee Andre Marriner is doing the coin-toss with captain's O'Shea and Jose Fonte, who shake hands. Koeman looks calm on the bench - with the rumours about him taking over the Dutch national team clearly at the back of his mind.
2 minBit of a slow start to this one, as both teams try to find their feet in the game.
3 minShane Long concedes a free-kick outside of the box, giving Sunderland the chance to swing one in.
3 minGomez curls it in left-footed, and Wickham is first to react. He wins a header, but it flies over the bar and Forster is left untroubled in goal.
5 minDown the other end and Southampton have a similar free-kick opportunity. Davis whips this one in, however he lacks any of the accuracy that Gomez just showed.
8 minYellow Card Wickham clips England hopeful Nathaniel Clyne cynically! A fully deserved booking for the forward.
9 minGomez is trying hard to impose himself in the midfield. He's not having any joy as yet but he's certainly got the talent to make things happen.
11 minGOAL FOR SOUTHAMPTON: From almost nowhere, Southampton take the lead and it is one of the strangest own goals you'll ever see!! With the ball bobbling into the box, Vergini goes to clear as Long tries to break through. Instead of clearing, he fires a lethal half-volley past a stricken Vito Mannone and into his own net. Unbelievable scenes.
13 minThere is a genuine sense of shock around that goal in all honesty. Southampton hadn't tested Mannone as yet, and Vergini has just handicapped his side in the most random fashion.
15 minGOAL FOR SOUTHAMPTON: Davis gets the ball in the area in space. He rolls the ball into Pelle and the Italian makes no mistake in doubling his team's lead! 2-0, and my prediction of a score-draw is looking tough for Sunderland now.
18 minSAVE! Sunderland desperately search for a way back into the game, and Larsson goes close, drawing a strong save from Forster. From a free-kick from a promising position, the Swede bends his effort up and over the wall, forcing the England keeper into a good stop.
20 minSunderland are knocking on the door a little, and if Wickham had a little bit more desire to get on to the end of Larsson's delivery, he might well have been in with a chance there.
29 minApologies for the delay in updates there, my laptop slipped into "poor connection" mode. But we're back in business and the Saints still lead 2-0.
31 minLong tries to create space in the Sunderland box before Gomez steps in to clear. Clyne picks up the lose ball, fires a cross back into the area, across the face and out for a throw the other side. Dangerous.
33 minAnother ball gets whipped in from Long, this time too close to Mannone and easy to gather. The Saints are having joy down that right side though.
34 minCHANCE! Big chance for Sunderland, and Steven Fletcher in particular. Some nice build-up see's the Scot threaded through by Cattermole. His touch is heavy, giving Forster the encouragement to fly out and meet him. Fletcher pokes his shot past the goalie and wide, before being wiped out. They cry foul, but in truth the chance had gone because of the poor initial touch.
36 minGOAL FOR SOUTHAMPTON! Jack Cork makes it three, meeting Tadic's cross at the back post and fires too hard for Mannone to stop. Tadic brought the ball down superbly before jinking his way past Vergini and crossing with his right foot. Cork was in acres of space, with firing past Mannone his only task. Lovely goal.
38 minThe home fans are understandably full of voice now, with their team bossing this one. That chance for Fletcher just prior to Cork's strike certainly looks like it might be the turning point of this game.
40 minSunderland seem to have had quite a lot of the ball without actually using it to their advantage. Each time Southampton win it back, they break so quickly and look the far more dangerous team. Koeman has put a really excellent side together here, in case you hadn't already noticed.
42 minThe way Clyne and Bertrand on the flanks get forward for the Saints is admirable. Even at 3-0, this team clearly wants more, and their inventiveness set up Tadic. The Serb back heels the ball to Pelle, who fires wide.
44 minSunderland force their way into the area, with the ball landing at Buckley's feet wide right of the box. He cuts in on to his left foot, but skews a shot horribly high and into the stands. Poor effort.
45+1 minDavis takes a short corner before swinging the ball in left footed. Fonte almost gets there, with Vergini just doing enough to block his path.
3.49pmPerhaps tipping Sunderland to snatch a draw here was an error on my part, as the Black Cats have simply not been able to contain Southampton's pace on the break today. Tadic is once again pulling the strings, with Pelle looking more than happy to bury any chances that come his way.
3.51pmThe first goal was just incredible - an unexplainable own goal from Vergini almost. If he was a forward, he'd be being applauded for his finish, such was the quality in his volley. It really was an odd one, and the Saints haven't looked back ever since.
3.53pmSo unfortunately, this one looks all but wrapped up, barring a miracle showing from the Black Cats after the break.
3.58pmWith Manchester City beating Spurs earlier this afternoon, Southampton can't improve on their position of third in the table today. Not they'll mind however, and I'm sure their fans will be more than happy at how their team are playing right now!
45 minWe're back underway here and Poyet has introduced Liam Bridcutt in place of Wes Brown, with Vergini shuffling into the middle to partner O'Shea.
47 minSunderland need to get more support up to Fletcher, who is increasingly isolated here.
48 minCLOSE! Davis nearly gets his first goal of the season, volleying over from Pelle's knock down. The delivery is once again from Tadic, who always seems to be on the verge of creating something positive for the Saints.
52 minSunderland are having the odd foray into Saints territory, but the home side are dealing with them comfortably. Another hopeful cross towards Fletcher comes in, with Fonte meeting it with ease and heading away.
54 minPelle tries to slip Davis in after another great move. The midfielder almost gets there before Mannone, who nicks the ball of his toes and smothers. Had Davis won the race, it could've easily been 4-0.
60 minSubstitution for Sunderland: Adam Johnson replaces Jordi Gomez, with Poyet obviously hoping his winger can somehow drag his team back into this one.
61 minDavis threads Pelle in but Mannone smothers. Long meets the rebound, his effort is blocked, and Sunderland clear away. He's still searching for his first goal for the club.
62 minGOAL FOR SOUTHAMPTON: Possibly another own goal here, though Pelle will certainly try and claim it. The Italian is picked out by Bertrand, fires low and under Mannone. With the ball rolling goalwards, Bridcutt gets it stuck under his feet and it crosses the line. Awful afternoon for Sunderland.
64 minSubstitution for Southampton: Koeman decides that Sunderland haven't suffered enough, bringing Mane on for Davis to run at this visiting defence. Shane Long is also replaced by Victor Wanyama.
68 minGOAL FOR SOUTHAMPTON: Far too easy for Southampton here, with Pelle making it 5-0. Tadic rolls the ball into the box, he holds Vergini off with ease and fires into Mannone's bottom corner.
69 min7 in 10 now for Pelle, who is really making a big impact in English football now. He looks the real deal up front for Southampton at the moment.
71 minSunderland are passing the ball around aimlessly now, as you'd expect when five down. The hosts meanwhile are clearly enjoying their afternoon, with Mane winning a free kick on the side of the box.
73 minCLOSE! Pelle should have his hat-trick, putting a shot over the bar after Wanyama had hit a cross-come-shot into his path. Unlucky, but he probably had the time to take another touch.
76 minGOAL FOR SOUTHAMPTON: Awful error from Mannone, allowing Tadic to add a sixth for the Saints. The keeper sliced a clearance from a back-pass, and Tadic was able to curl the ball into an empty net from 30 yards.
78 minGOAL FOR SOUTHAMPTON: And it's 7-0! Wanyama smashes the ball past Mannone after more brilliant play from Tadic, who rolls the ball to the midfielder after turning Van Aanholt inside out. It's party time here at St Mary's!!
82 minIt's exhibition stuff for Southampton now, with Tadic at the heart of absolutely everything good about them. They really are a joy to watch.
85 minGOAL FOR SOUTHAMPTON: Mane adds an eighth (EIGHTH!!) for the home side. Bertrand breaks down the left, latches on to a pass and centres, and the Senegalese man is there to bury his first goal in English football.
87 minIt's incredible stuff from Southampton today. Sunderland has lost just one game so far this term, but this is a hammering from a side who have a brilliant chance of qualifying for Europe this season.
89 minIt's nearly over Sunderland, who will be put out of their misery after three added minutes.
90 minFor the first time in what feels like an age, Mannone saves a shot from the Southampton forwards! Mane stings his palms, and he parries away for a corner.
4.53pmWell, who saw that coming? An incredible performance from Southampton, who showed their full skill set this afternoon against a limp Sunderland side. Pelle, Tadic, Davis and Cork were all excellent for the home side, who never looked like losing after taking the lead to an unbelievable 12th minute own goal by Vergini.
4.57pmI'm not too sure what else there is to say on Sunderland, who were still trying up until the third goal, but were suffered a sorry afternoon thereafter.
4.58pmThanks for joining us here on Sports Mole this afternoon. Stick around for all the reaction from this, and all the other Premier League matches from the day.