Anthony Patterson: 7/10
Another clean sheet for Patterson, got lucky at one point when a shot squirmed just wide off his gloves but calm on the ball and managed to get a few dangerous corners away by being assertive.
Trai Hume: 8/10
Like Cirkin on the other side had to be on it all game but got the better of his man and contributed going forward with a De Bruyneesque cross for Clarke’s goal.
Dan Ballard: 9/10
Brilliant defensively today, always seemed to be the player in the middle when a dangerous ball came in and took a hell of a whack when Armstrong stood on his leg but thankfully got up, carried on and continued impressing.
Luke O’Nien (C): 8/10
Had to defend really well all afternoon but kept at it all game and showed why he is now a first choice centre back. Almost scored a screamer too when a long range effort from a corner just didn’t dip in time.
Dennis Cirkin: 8/10
Had to work hard defensively with the amount of possession Southampton had but was solid all afternoon and was really keen to get forward and support attacks. Had a really good chance when he followed up Dack’s free kick but couldn’t quite control the ball.
Dan Neil: 9/10
Played really well again today and played some sublime balls to team-mates to start attacks. The lofted ball over the top to Ba in the build up to the first goal was superb, played another first time ball over the top to Dack whose touch let him down and then set Hemir away for a chance to make it five near the end.
Pierre Ekwah: 10/10
Two goals from outside the box with that sweet left foot of his but the second was particularly good, with the midfielder winning the ball himself and then catching the goalkeeper out with a near post shot.
Abdoullah Ba: 8/10
Didn’t always make the right decision in attacking areas and strayed offside when he shouldn’t but a very good game for Ba. He was heavily involved in three goals, getting two assists thanks to balls to Ekwah and Dack, then running beyond the Southampton backline for the first and cutting inside and playing in Jobe. Was always our main outlet to relieve pressure and covered a lot of ground doing so.
Jobe Bellingham: 7/10
Heavily involved in the first goal when he ran forward, evaded challenges and laid the ball off for Ba to pass to Ekwah and did similar throughout the rest of his time on the pitch, relieving pressure and constantly harassing the Southampton defenders.
Jack Clarke: 9/10
Ran riot down the left hand side all afternoon and will probably feel he should have had another goal or at least an assist to his name, which he certainly deserved but did score the opener with a well timed run to get on the end of Hume’s ball. Worked really hard off the ball as well.
Bradley Dack: 7/10
Scored his first goal for the club, slotting home Ba’s pass, a second after he almost scored from Cirkin’s cross. Linked up well with his team-mates with some nice little lay-offs and forced a good save from the goalkeeper with a free kick. Perhaps lucky not to give away a penalty in the first half.
Alex Pritchard: 7/10
Came on and did a similar job to Dack, linking up with his team-mates and causing Southampton problems with his quick one-twos.
Luis Hemir: 7/10
So unlucky not to score after he broke the offside trap with a well timed run but a good save from Bazunu stopped him from opening his Sunderland account. Also hit an absolute rocket just wide late on.
Chris Rigg: 7/10
Came on and got on the scoresheet with a good header into the far corner from Bennette’s cross.
Jewison Bennette: 7/10
Came on and clearly wanted to make a point, did some showboating to show up the visitors then put an absolute peach of a cross onto Rigg’s head for the fifth.
Man of the Match: Pierre Ekwah
What a performance by the big man. Got two goals, the first when well placed on the edge of the box and the second he made himself by stealing the ball, cutting inside and catching the visitor’s ‘keeper out with a quick near post effort.
Not only did he get two goals though, he won the ball back plenty, was too strong for the Southampton midfield and played as if he was a player with vast experience, rather than a 21-year-old with 23 senior appearances to his name. Unbelievable.