Tottenham travel to Southampton on Sunday where their away record in Premier League matches is extremely poor. St. Mary’s Stadium is a ground where Spurs have never won, taken a point or even managed to score in five League and Cup visits since Southampton moved there in August, 2001. Tottenham’s last away match against Southampton was in March, 2005 where they lost 0 – 1, duplicating the score of their previous three League games at St. Mary’s. Spurs’ poor form at Southampton is not just confined to the League as in January 2003 they lost at St. Mary’s in an FA Cup 3rd Round match. On 1st January, 2003 Spurs lost to a late goal scored by James Beattie in the Premier League fixture and three days later Glenn Hoddle’s team returned for the Cup tie and put in an abysmal performance, losing by four goals.
Tottenham’s League Record at Southampton (inc. PL)
P 49 W 10 D 16 L 23 For 45 Ag 67
Spurs Away Record at St. Mary’s Stadium in Premier League
P 13 W 2 D 3 L 8 For 8 Ag 15
Tottenham’s first game of the Premier League era was at Southampton in August, 1992 and the result of that match has rather set the tone for subsequent matches. It ended scoreless but was memorable for Tottenham’s Andy Turner as he made his League debut and at the time was the youngest player in the Premier League. Also making his Tottenham debut was Darren Anderton who had been signed from Portsmouth during the summer. Tottenham’s team for that first Premier League game was:
Walker; Fenwick, Cundy, Ruddock, Edinburgh; Turner (Gray), Howells, Samways, Anderton, Allen; Durie.
In a total of 13 Premier League matches at Southampton, Spurs have managed to score only 8 goals with five of them coming in two games, both defeats. In April, 1995 Teddy Sheringham scored twice and Jurgen Klinsmann once as Spurs lost 3 – 4 while in a 2 – 3 reverse in October, 1997 Jose Dominguez and David Ginola scored.
Tottenham’s last away success over Southampton was in the last century in November, 1999 when a single goal from Oyvind Leonardsen, nine minutes from time secured the points. Fourteen months earlier in September, 1998 a Ruel Fox goal earned Tottenham a point in a 1 – 1 draw. Fox scored midway through the first half but Matthew Le Tissier equalised after an hour.
Spurs’ first, and only other Premier League win came in September, 1996 courtesy of a Chris Armstrong penalty.
Ronnie Rosenthal’s Day
The only moment of enlightenment for Tottenham at Southampton in the past twenty years came in the FA Cup. In the 5th Round replay, it looked as if it was going to be more of the same for Spurs at the Dell, Southampton’s old ground. Spurs were two down at half-time but manager Gerry Francis introduced substitute Ronnie Rosenthal who turned the game with an astonishing hat-trick as Spurs went on to an incredible 6 – 2 win after extra time.
In the last season of the old 1st Division, Spurs visited Southampton on the opening day of the season in August, 1991 as holders of the FA Cup. They won 3 – 2 with the goals scored by Gary Lineker (2) and Gordon Durie.
0 – 0 with a Difference
Looking at past results, scoreless draws are usually regarded as dull, boring matches. This was not the case on 29th April, 1978. The match in the old 2nd Division was so important to both clubs who were battling for promotion. Tottenham, after one season in the 2nd Division, needed at least a point to secure the third promotion place and in a very tense and nervous match they held on for the point which kept them above Brighton on goal difference.
Going by Tottenham’s Premier League history at Southampton’s St. Mary’s ground, if they score a goal or take a point from Sunday’s game, it could be regarded as an achievement and a cause for celebration. Also going against Spurs is their record in away games against newly promoted sides. In reality, however, Tottenham will be looking for a win to strengthen their position to challenge for a Champions League position and get back on track following last Saturday’s home defeat to Chelsea. Gareth Bale will be returning to his former club for the first time since joining Tottenham so that will add something extra to the game for him and Southampton. hopefully, he will fare better than when he returned to Wales at Swansea last season. An interesting game is in prospect as Spurs visit the south coast club for the 50th League match between the two clubs in Southampton.