Bournemouth and Southampton played out a draw in an entertaining south-coast derby at the Vitality Stadium on Sunday.

By 90Min
December 03, 2017

Bournemouth and Southampton played out a draw in an entertaining south-coast derby at the Vitality Stadium on Sunday.

The Cherries led in the first-half when Ryan Fraser was on hand to capitalise on an unforced error and convert, before Charlie Austin levelled after the break as the away side looked to complete a turnaround.

But neither side could find a winner, despite a number of promising opportunities throughout an open second-half.

After a scrappy and somewhat disjointed start to the game, it was the visitors that began to assert their authority and nearly led inside twelve minutes. Virgil van Dijk met an in-swinging corner with an emphatic leap but planted his header wide of the far post.

Bournemouth appeared to be lacking confidence and were notably subdued in the opening stages, although they themselves came close to an opener when Jermain Defoe flicked on a goal-bound effort but was denied by a reflex Fraser Forster save.

The opportunity seemed to lift the hosts, who began a period of pressure of their own. A well-guided Nathan Ake header was parried away by Forster before Bournemouth saw vehement protests for a penalty dismissed, and Adam Smith booked, controversially, for what referee Jon Moss deemed to be a dive.

But minutes before half-time, Bournemouth were in front after Wesley Hoedt was caught on the ball and a swift passing move culminated in a neat finish from the unmarked Fraser.

Southampton had not been without chances. Austin's close-range header was well-saved by Artur Boruc, while Sofiane Boufal, in space in the box, blazed over moments before the break.

But Bournemouth had been rewarded for a much-improved display, and Josh King came within inches of doubling the lead immediately after half-time with a left-footed shot across goal.

The away side were improving too, though, putting their hosts under increasing pressure as the second-half progressed. And with an hour played, they were level, Austin converting clinically having been picked out by substitute Nathan Redmond.

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Having equalised, Southampton were firmly in the ascendancy. Mauricio Pellegrino's side enjoyed almost complete domination of the ball, and looked increasingly threatening, but couldn't convert the opportunities they created.

Austin missed the best of them with ten minutes remaining when he climbed highest to meet a Ryan Bertrand cross but headed over, clutching his head in his hands in realisation at the quality of the chance.

There was still time for Bournemouth's Ake to head over a late, late corner, but neither side could find a winning goal in an entertaining south-coast derby. The draw left the home side in 14th, and Southampton two points better off in 11th.

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