Southampton 3-2 Liverpool post-match analysis: Saints march on in thrilling comeback

Southampton beat Liverpool 3-2 at St Mary's in a thrilling day for Ronald Koeman's side.

Southampton 3-2 Liverpool post-match analysis: Saints march on in thrilling comeback
Sadio Mane was the star of the show. | Photo: Getty Images.

Southampton continued their pursuit of European football as they fought back from 2-0 down, to take all three points against Liverpool at St Mary’s.

Sadio Mane, a half time substitute, inspired an excellent comeback for the Saints as they now look in a strong position to finish the season in a Europa League place.

Difficult first half for the Saints

Southampton fell behind early on after an impressive strike from Phillipe Coutinho and a smart finish from Daniel Sturridge.

Saints fans must have been fearing that Liverpool could replicate a performance similar to that of their last visit to St Mary’s, when they beat the Saints 6-1 in the League Cup quarter-final in December.

Subs make the difference

In a bid to turn the game around, Saints boss Ronald Koeman brought on Mane and Victor Wanyama at half time, who changed the game for the Saints.

They had the perfect chance to claw Liverpool back just minutes after the restart, as Martin Skrtel fouled Graziano Pelle in the box leaving referee Roger East to point to the spot.

Mane took the penalty but was unable to convert as Simon Mignolet made a strong save. The disappointment did not affect the striker though, as he kept his head up to help the Saints record their second win in a row.

The Senegalese international provided two brilliant finishes and striker Pelle scored a stunning goal to ensure the Saints kept up their race for a European place,. They now sit 7th, just four points behind fourth place Manchester City.

Koeman charged up the touchline in celebration. | Photo: Getty Images.
Koeman charged up the touchline in celebration. | Photo: Getty Images.

Koeman delighted

Following the match Koeman spoke of his pride for the team, he said: “I was so happy for the players. It was a must-win game, the same as last week." The Dutchman added, "We are still fighting for a European place. That is what we want.

He continued: “I’m proud of the team. We had great spirit after half time and it was hard to manage it after 45 minutes.

Southampton now face a tough task as they travel to Premier League leaders Leicester City, though Koeman's men will feel confident after a remarkable day at St Mary’s.