Southampton 0 Derby County 0: Lowe under pressure after bore draw with Derby
Sunday 05 February 2006
It has been a turbulent week for both clubs, with Southampton losing to Plymouth after an irritatingly dubious penalty decision, while Derby's defensive frailties gifted Sheffield United the points in the wake of last weekend's shock defeat against Colchester in the FA Cup. The Rams acted quickly by sacking their manager, Phil Brown, while on the south coast, a rumoured takeover by a consortium led by Andrew Strode-Gibbons has been the talk of the town.
George Burley, Southampton's manager, decided that big changes were needed yesterday, so he brought in Danish striker Peter Madsen and defender Alexander Ostlund from Feyenoord. But new faces quickly brought together rarely make for smiling football and, here, the unfamiliarity caused Southampton to begin like strangers.
Derby were not much better; passing badly and defending on the verge of generosity - but at least they had a shot somewhere near the target in a lamentable first half. A teasing free-kick from Inigo Idiakez was headed a shade round the post by Darren Moore. Lacking an alternative, the home crowd amused themselves by chanting: "We want Rupert [Lowe] out."
Keeping the ball out of their net was the more immediate priority for Southampton when, shortly before half-time, a corner from Idiakez beat Bartosz Bialkowski's grasp and almost went in. The keeper then pushed Moore's header on to the underside of the crossbar and the rebound was screwed wide by Tommy Smith. Action! What a relief.
For the bulk of the second half, the home side remained penned in their own half, further annoying supporters who continued their insults against chairman Lowe.
Derby were unfortunate not to secure the win when Smith's shot rammed into Claus Lundekvam, but, as far as the future of both clubs was concerned, nothing here hinted at real optimism. Having already shipped out 17 players since his arrival, Burley accepted that even more changes are now needed.
Latest in Sport
Royal Rumble 2015: Roman Reigns triumphs after The Rock returns to set-up Wrestlemania showdown with Brock Lesnar
Phil Neville backtracks on Tomas Rosicky 'I'd smash him' comments from Match of the Day 2
Transfer news and rumours LIVE: Gabriel Paulista to Arsenal, Chelsea target Raheem Sterling, Manchester United want Benzema
Royal Rumble 2015: Watch The Rock return to the WWE to rescue Roman Reigns
Transfer talk: Chelsea plan shock move for Raheem Sterling; Real Madrid open to selling Karim Benzema; Spurs target £5m Danny Ings
- 3 The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
- 4 British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
French court convicts three over homophobic tweets, in case hailed as a 'significant victory' by LGBT rights campaigners
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British Muslim school children suffering a backlash of abuse following Paris attacks
Islamic history is full of free thinkers - but recent attempts to suppress critical thought are verging on the absurd
30,000 reasons why the rhetoric on immigrants claiming benefits can stop now