West Brom 0 Southampton 1 match report: Life is sweet for Rickie Lambert after striking second winner in a week

Striker caps his England debut winner with late goal to stun The Hawthorns

the hawthoirns

A special week in the life of Rickie Lambert got even better yesterday afternoon. Three days after heading the winning goal against Scotland on his England debut, he was at it again at the Hawthorns, snatching victory for Southampton from a match that had appeared destined to end in stalemate.

Where he had needed just two minutes and 45 seconds to score after taking the Wembley pitch on Wednesday, he had to wait until the very last to make the difference yesterday, showing confidence and ice-cool composure to drill a penalty into the bottom right-hand corner of the Albion net, giving Ben Foster no chance even though the goalkeeper had dived the right way.
Lambert had had only one-half chance during the preceding 89 minutes but his manager, Mauricio Pocchettini, said he had no doubt that the Liverpudlian, who hit 15 goals in his first top-flight campaign last term, would add another. “It’s a perfect moment for him,” he added. “He’s enjoyed a brilliant few days, but he deserves everything he’s getting because he’s a great person and a great footballer.”
Whether it should have been a penalty was open to question. Youssuf Mulumbu had just been announced as the sponsors’ man of the match when he stuck out a leg to challenge Luke Shaw as the full-back burst into the Albion box. The contact appeared minimal but Shaw went down and referee Kevin Friend pointed to the spot. “I thought it was very soft. I have seen it again on a number of occasions and am still looking for the contact,” said an unhappy Steve Clarke, the Albion manager.
For Southampton, it was their first victory at the Hawthorns since 1984 and it suggested they are well equipped to avoid last season’s struggles. Then they won just one of their first 11 league matches but the fixture computer has given them a kinder start and there were promising signs from their two new signings, the £12.5m Victor Wanyama, who helped them establish early control in the midfield, and Dejan Lovren, the Croatian international centre-back signed for £8.5m from Lyon. On this showing – and one penalty-box challenge on Nicolas Anelka was outstanding – he will provide solidity to a defence that leaked goals last season. “We are a much more competitive team now,” said Pocchettino.
Perhaps their best piece of business this summer, though, might have been persuading left-back Luke Shaw to sign a new five-year contract. In the first half he ghosted past James Morrison before firing in a shot that Gareth McAuley deflected behind, and later drew a full-length stop from Foster with a 20-yard strike.
Shaw was one of three English 18-year-olds in the visitors’ lineup alongside James Ward-Prowse and debutant Calum Chambers and it was the latter’s cross that led to Adam Lallana scoring a disallowed goal just after the half-hour. Lambert nodded the ball back across goal for Lallana to score but with Jay Rodriguez in an offside position, the goal did not stand.
Rodriguez then lashed a shot against the crossbar – albeit after Lallana’s foul on Gareth McAuley – but Albion improved in the second half. Prior to that their only goal threat had been a Graham Dorrans free-kick that brushed the top of the net but now Shane Long and Morrison might both have scored from low balls into the box. 
Albion’s previous Premier League fixture had been the incredible 5-5 goal-fest with Manchester United in Sir Alex Ferguson’s farewell match, when Romelu Lukaku scored a hat-trick. The Belgian will be missed this season. His replacement, the 34-year-old Nicolas Anelka, may have scored seven goals in as many pre-season games but he cut a peripheral figure on his sixth club debut in English football.
Albion have now won just one of their last 10 league fixtures and not until injury time did Artur Boruc have a serious save to make when clawing away Billy Jones’ header. By then, though, a certain England centre-forward had already had his say.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Renee Zellweger as Bridget Jones
Arts and Entertainment

Russell Brand at an anti-austerity march in June
peopleActor and comedian says 'there's no point doing it if you're not'
Sergio Aguero prepares for the game

Follow the latest events from this Champions League fixture

Arts and Entertainment
Banksy's 'The Girl with the Pierced Eardrum' in Bristol
art'Girl with the Pierced Eardrum' followed hoax reports artist had been arrested and unveiled
Bourgogne wine maker Laboure-Roi vice president Thibault Garin (L) offers the company's 2013 Beaujolais Nouveau wine to the guest in the wine spa at the Hakone Yunessun spa resort facilities in Hakone town, Kanagawa prefecture, some 100-kilometre west of Tokyo
Oscar Pistorius is led out of court in Pretoria. Pistorius received a five-year prison sentence for culpable homicide by judge Thokozile Masipais for the killing of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp
voicesThokozile Masipa simply had no choice but to jail the athlete
Arts and Entertainment
Sister Cristina Scuccia sings 'Like a Virgin' in Venice

Like Madonna, Sister Cristina Scuccia's video is also set in Venice

Arts and Entertainment
James Blunt's debut album Back to Bedlam shot him to fame in 2004

Singer says the track was 'force-fed down people's throats'

Life and Style
The Tinder app has around 10 million users worldwide

techThe original free dating app will remain the same, developers say


Endangered species spotted in a creek in the Qinling mountains

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

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

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

Day In a Page

Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells
Let's talk about loss

We need to talk about loss

Secrecy and silence surround stillbirth
Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Women may be better suited to space travel than men are
Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

How to dress with authority

Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

Tim Minchin interview

For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album