March 7 (Reuters) - Newcastle United leapfrogged Southampton in the Premier League standings and moved up to 13th with a 1-0 win at St Mary’s Stadium on Saturday, thanks to a solo second-half effort from French winger Allan Saint-Maximin.
Southampton struggled to get a foothold in the game after they were reduced to 10 men when winger Moussa Djenepo made a reckless challenge to get sent off in the 28th minute.
Djenepo was initially booked when he caught Isaac Hayden above the ankle but the Video Assistant Referee (VAR) advised referee Graham Scott to take a second look on the pitchside monitor, after which a red card was produced.
Southampton were nearly undone just before halftime when Sofiane Boufal used his upper arm to clear the ball inside the box, awarding Newcastle their first penalty of the season, but Alex McCarthy dived to his left to stop Matt Ritchie’s effort.
With Southampton a man down, it was down to McCarthy to deny the Newcastle players on numerous occasions — particularly Dwight Gayle who had three shots on target blocked — and the goalkeeper finished the first half with six saves.
But McCarthy could do nothing when Saint-Maximin pressed Yan Valery, pinched the ball from his fellow Frenchman and then toe-poked the ball off the post for his second goal of the season to give Newcastle their first league win since January. (Reporting by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; editing by Clare Fallon)