Premier League: South Hampton remain bottom after losing to Villa
LONDON, UK: Southampton remain rooted to the bottom of the Premier League after Ollie Watkins’ second-half header earned Aston Villa a narrow win at St Mary’s.Watkins nodded Douglas Luiz’s outswinging free-kick into the bottom corner with 13 minutes remaining as Villa claimed their fifth victory in seven league games under new manager Unai Emery.The visitors dominated possession but were fortunate not to fall behind midway through the first half when Che Adams’ close-range effort was ruled out for offside.
Saints had the ball in the Villa net again shortly after the hour mark, but James Ward-Prowse’s deflected strike was chalked off after VAR spotted a foul by Mohamed Elyounoussi in the build-up.
Watkins’ fifth goal of the season ultimately proved decisive, as Saints’ three-match winning run in all competitions came to an abrupt end.
“I’m so happy with his work and how he is helping the team,” Emery said of the former Brentford forward. “If he is scoring I think he can be feeling better and he can take confidence.”It is not just his responsibility alone to score, it is for other players as well. But I’m so happy with him today.”
Saturday’s game at St Mary’s was suspended five minutes before half-time when a drone was seen hovering above the Southampton penalty area.Both teams were taken off the pitch by referee Michael Salisbury before re-emerging 10 minutes later once police had given the all-clear.