Pearson produces shock of Saints' year

Southampton 0 Bristol City 1

St Mary's

If Southampton fail to win promotion to the Premier League this season, their rivals may have Bristol City to thank.

Saints remain top of the Championship despite their first home defeat of the season, but they have dropped six points against Derek McInnes's side, who continued their rise away from the bottom three last night thanks to a goal 11 minutes from time from Stephen Pearson.

A hard-working team performance and some determined defending by City produced one of the shock results of the season so far. They beat Saints 2-0 at Ashton Gate on November 26, but had not won since, while Southampton were defending an unbeaten home league record in 2011 of 21 wins in 23 games – though they have now won only one of the past three matches here.

City looked sharper from the off, and even when Southampton managed to get players into shooting positions, Adam Lallana and Guly Do Prado wanted too much time. It took a long-range drive by Morgan Schneiderlin to draw the first save of the evening from David James after 27 minutes.

James was in action again after 33 minutes, blocking Steve De Ridder's shot after Ryan McGivern's error had allowed him a run into the penalty area. When the ball rebounded to the Dutch winger, he could not pick out a team-mate, which was the story of his night.

Southampton needed one of the half-time tactical adjustments that have brought so many victories at St Mary's, but instead they had a scare when Nicky Maynard, linked with Southampton among others, netted the rebound after a parry by Kelvin Davis, only to flagged offside. And there was another after 73 minutes when only Davis's fingertips prevented Pearson slipping the ball into the far corner.

City kept Rickie Lambert quiet until the 76th minute, when Saints' top scorer chested the ball down with his back to goal and hit a volley on the turn that sent James full length to save. But it did not herald a breakthrough for the home side. Two minutes later, City substitute Neil Kilkenny swerved in a shot that Davis could not hold, and although he blocked Maynard's follow-up, he could not stop Pearson netting the winner from four yards.

Southampton: (4-4-2): Davis; Richardson (Holmes 88), Martin, Hooiveld, Fox; De Ridder, Schneiderlin (Hammond 78), Cork, Lallana (Connolly 77); Do Prado, Lambert.

Bristol City: (4-1-3-2): James; Wilson, Carey, Nyataga, McGivern; Cisse (Kilkenny 65); Skuse, Elliott, Pearson (Woolford 86); Adomah (Clarkson 90), Maynard.

Referee: D Deadman (Cambridgeshire).

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Refugee crisis: David Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia - will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi?

Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia...

But will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi, asks Robert Fisk
Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Humanity must be at the heart of politics, says Jeremy Corbyn
Joe Biden's 'tease tour': Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?

Joe Biden's 'tease tour'

Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?
Britain's 24-hour culture: With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever

Britain's 24-hour culture

With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever
Diplomacy board game: Treachery is the way to win - which makes it just like the real thing

The addictive nature of Diplomacy

Bullying, betrayal, aggression – it may be just a board game, but the family that plays Diplomacy may never look at each other in the same way again
Lady Chatterley's Lover: Racy underwear for fans of DH Lawrence's equally racy tome

Fashion: Ooh, Lady Chatterley!

Take inspiration from DH Lawrence's racy tome with equally racy underwear
8 best children's clocks

Tick-tock: 8 best children's clocks

Whether you’re teaching them to tell the time or putting the finishing touches to a nursery, there’s a ticker for that
Charlie Austin: Queens Park Rangers striker says ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

Charlie Austin: ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

After hitting 18 goals in the Premier League last season, the QPR striker was the great non-deal of transfer deadline day. But he says he'd preferred another shot at promotion
Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

The Arab Spring reversed

Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

Who is Oliver Bonas?

It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

60 years of Scalextric

Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones