Nigerian Players abroad Aribo strikes late to hand Southampton win against Birmingham City

Nigeria international Joe Aribo was the hero as Southampton won an enthralling encounter 4-3 at St Andrew’s, scoring a dramatic late winner six minutes into stoppage time to defeat Birmingham City on Saturday.

Having trailed twice in the first half, Saints seemed on course for victory after taking a 3-2 lead and seeing the hosts reduced to 10 men following the 62nd minute dismissal of captain Dion Sanderson. But Birmingham improbably levelled the scores 13 minutes from time, before Aribo arrived off the bench to poach a priceless winner.

The hosts flew out of the traps at the start of the game, scoring first through Koji Miyoshi and hitting the post though Juninho Bacuna inside the opening six minutes. From that point on, Saints were outstanding with the ball in a first half in which they had 16 shots.

Adam Armstrong slotted home a deserved equaliser on 18 minutes, while Che Adams and Armstrong also struck the woodwork either side of Birmingham’s second goal, which arrived completely against the run of play.

Saints then took charge after the interval, scoring twice in four minutes through David Brooks’s sumptuous curling shot and a striker’s finish from Adams, before Birmingham captain Dion Sanderson was given a straight red card for a studs-up tackle on Will Smallbone.

With a 3-2 lead and a man advantage, Saints were hot favourites to take home three points, but Bacuna was in the right place at the right time after the woodwork was hit yet again, this time by Stansfield, 13 minutes from the end of normal time.

With nine added minutes signalled, Saints pushed hard for a winner and got their rewards deep into stoppage time when Aribo pounced from a corner to inflict the final blow on Birmingham in a match for the ages.


Dennis Mabuka

Dennis Mabuka is a seasoned Kenyan journalist with 18 years of experience covering sports events. He is currently a sport content creator with en.Africatopsports.com.

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