London - Bargain
midfielder Pedro Obiang ruined a goalscoring debut for Southampton's
new Italian international Manolo Gabbiadini as West Ham United grabbed a
3-1 win on Saturday.
Gabbiadini scored with his first shot for his new club, just 12
minutes into his debut after his £14 million move from Napoli.
The ball was crossed over the West Ham defence and the 25-year-old
escaped the offside trap to crash the ball in with his favoured left
foot off the crossbar.
But Slaven Bilic's side, who included £10 million import Robert Snodgrass, stunned the home crowd to silence within two minutes.
Obiang, who cost less than £5 million when signed two years ago,
split the Southampton defence with a brilliant pass and Andy Carroll
powered the ball in for his fourth goal in four games.
While Gabbiadini threatened more trouble, Obiang again stole the
limelight just before half-time with his first goal in 55 games for West
The Spanish player picked up the ball just inside the Southampton
half, ran with it and powered a shot from just outside the penalty area
that Saints goalkeeper Fraser Forster could not push clear.
West Ham delivered a killer blow just after the break when Mark
Noble's corner went into the goal off the boot of Saints midfielder
Southampton, already without key defender Virgil Van Dijk, suffered a
new injury blow when record signing Sofiane Boufal hobbled off with the
help of the Saints medical team.
Gabbiadini fired one close chance wide and James Ward-Prowse
forced West Ham goalkeeper Darren Randolph into a quickfire tipover.
But the Irons held on for a crucial win that lifted them further into
mid-table safety while Southampton must now find a way to avoid falling
into the Premier League relegation scrap.