Manchester City v Southampton 1981/82

southampton home 1981 to 82 prog


League Division 1

12th September 1981

Attendance 42,003

Southampton Keegan(23 pen)

Ref Peter Willis

City Corrigan, Ranson, McDonald, Reid, Boyer, Caton, O’Neill, Gow, Francis, Reeves, Hutchison – sub Bond(unused)

Southampton Wells, Golac, Holmes, Baker, Waldron, Agboola, Keegan, Channon, Moran, Armstrong, Ball – sub Puckett

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42,000 fans turned up at Maine Road to hail Trevor Francis’ home debut. Unfortunately in a game with plenty of effort but bereft of chances, there was little for the crowd to cheer. The Saints took the lead when Mick Channon was floored by Tommy Caton in the box, and from the resultant penalty Kevin Keegan put Southampton 1-0 up.

Tommy Hutchison was one of a few creative players on the day and just before the break he provided the cross to the far post where Kevin Reeves cracked home the equaliser. As for Francis’ debut he was kept fairly quiet and managed just two attempts on goal which were well saved by Wells.

In the second half the Southampton old-heads, Ball, Channon and Keegan, ensured the game would end in stalemate.

John Bond made his feelings felt after the game; Patrick Barclay reported in The Guardian that Bond had said amongst many expletives: “Some of our players were rubbish”, and he called the “cheats” saying he would “wring the bastards necks.” Pacing the floor like a coiffeured lion pausing only to bounce rhetorical questions off his assistant, John Benson, he comtinued: “We had everything going for us today, a good win last week, a great crowd, a new million pound player, and we let everyone down. It sickens the life out of me because if people on the terraces, who earn their cash the hard way , are not being given 100% effort they are being cheated. That is not going to happen as long as i’m manager of this football club.” Home debutant, Francis plus Gow, Reeves, Reid, Hutchison and Corrigan were immune to his backlash in the City bosses view.

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