But that scoreline was the real truth. “The way we work as a team was very pleasing, then on the counter attack we looked unplayable”.
The Toffees’ lead was extended to 3-0 late by midfielder Ross Barkley.
The Dutchman said: “The first half was not good, maybe we had one or two good chances but the performance of the team was not what we expect”.
Another Mane’s goal-ward shot from 25 yards was immediately parried away by Howard as the Ronald Koeman’s men struggled to force their way back into the game. “But it is hard to highlight an individual”.
Lukaku lays the ball off to Barkley just inside the penalty area; however his subsequent effort on goal is straight at Stekelenburg and is comfortably palmed clear.
“Ross can play different roles”.
That was on 22 minutes and Lukaku doubled his tally for the match and for the season with another breakaway goal. “His performance was about being very clever with his positioning”.
Saints have now gone eight Premier League matches without a clean sheet, conceding more than once in seven of them. “Everybody knows that we are working at one more defender”.
“Too much went wrong”.
“The first half we didn’t have any intensity and the reaction was magnificent”.
Roberto Martinez was not preoccupied with the display of the banner as he stated in high spirits, “As a team we were outstanding in every department”.
The 22-year-old immediately stopped his warm up and hopped the stadium signage fence and began walking up into the stands to apologise to the woman, who was wearing a Southampton shirt. Of course you want to perform better in the first home game, but we did not show our level.
Lukaku credits his own impressive start to the season to his enhanced physical condition following a productive close season.
A jubilant Martinez on the sidelines could afford himself a smile and a fist pump, something that was sorely lacking from his touchline presence for the majority of last season. We have to demand more from ourselves and find the gaps between the lines. We have a game in the Europa League on Thursday so it’s a very important wake-up alarm for us’.
A 2-0 loss at the Emirates last Sunday was not the way Arsene Wenger, nor his new keeper Petr Cech, envisioned starting the season, and yet that’s the way the script played out and the Gunners are without a point in the opening weekend as they prepare for Crystal Palace on Sunday. Florin Gardos and Ryan Bertrand are both out and Fraser Forster is likely to miss the entire season with a serious knee injury sustained last term. Everton deserved the win.