30 August 2020 10:49
SAINTS continued their blistering form from the end of last season - after they swept aside Swansea 7-1 in a behind-closed-doors friendly at St Mary's. Contesting four 30-minute periods against the Championship outfit, the hosts found the net with doubles from Danny Ings and James Ward-Prowse, who both last week celebrated their recalls to the England setup. Che Adams, Nathan Redmond and Ryan Bertrand were also on target inside the opening hour. With both sides then shuffling their line-ups, Swansea did reply through Jay Fulton with 10 minutes of the game remaining - but Ralph Hasenhuttl's side ran out convincing winners. Saints took just six minutes to gain the lead when Bertrand surged forward to latch on to Alex McCarthy's ball over the top.
Unchanged in the second quarter – it was then skipper Ward Prowse's turn to slot in a penalty to make it 4-0. On 42 minutes, former Chelsea man Bertrand then turned provider to help Ings notch his second. Ings was then unselfish after breaking clear and squaring for Ward Prowse to add his second and Saints' seventh. First & second 30 mins: McCarthy; Walker-Peters, Stephens, Bednarek, Bertrand; Romeu, Ward-Prowse, Armstrong, Redmond; Adams, Ings. Third 30 mins: Forster; Valery, Vestergaard, Klarer, Vokins; Slattery, Smallbone, Djenepo, Boufal; Long, Obafemi.
Che Adams opened the scoring just minutes into the match and Swansea could do very little to stop the Saints after that. Redmond, and Bertrand both added goals to the scoreline while Ings and Ward-Prowse each had a brace. Ings and Ward-Prowse each converted a penalty as well so that will be something to keep an eye on this coming season. It was an action-packed first 60 minutes of the match and the Saints should feel good about it going into the rest of the preseason and into the regular season. Forster started in net along with Valery, Vestergaard, Klarer, Vokins, Slattery, Smallbone, Djenepo, Boufal, Obafemi, and Long.
It was a cagey affair with chances coming few and far between and no goals came in the third period of 30 mins. Going into the final stage of the match there was only one change made for Saints with Jankewitz coming on for Slattery. It was another uneventful period of play with Southampton failing to find the back of the net again and Swansea getting a consolation goal. The organiser of an ongoing anti-lockdown protest in Dandenong appears to have been arrested by police in his own Facebook Live video. Jemal Abazi was filming on Facebook Live on Monday which shows him passing the camera over to another person while interacting with police before he appears to be arrested in the vision. A police officer is heard telling him he is charged with incitement in the video. About 4.50pm on Monday Mr Abazi began filming a Facebook Live video of himself walking around Dandenong where he is seen without a mask on, in defiance of lockdown orders. "We're going to the local park – and doing our exercises – and we have a lot of police there waiting for us," he says in the vision. He said he wanted to "see what attitude, this time, they've got" in regards to police. He said the "good ones" in the police force need to "wake up". Mr Abazi said police should "go and arrest the paedophiles". "We've got rapists and paedophiles and everything – they (police) are not doing their job, they protect them," he said. He arrived at George Andrews Reserve, the site of an alleged ongoing protest, about halfway through the 14-minute video, where he is approached by police and asked why he isn't wearing a mask. Mr Abazi handed his phone to another person while he interacted with the police officers. "Do you agree with what's going on at the moment? Honest opinion," he asked the police officer. He asked the police officer if he's "done the research" and said "the statistics are exactly the same" several times. On his filmed walk Mr Abazi repeatedly said, "What are they gonna do?" "What are they gonna do, stop me?" he said. "They can't stop me going for my exercise." The person filming said "Give the guy a fair go" to the police officers as they emptied his pockets and helped him into the back of the van. In the next video about 10.30pm on Monday, only 30-seconds long, Mr Abazi appeared shaken but said, "This is just a quick one because there's that many phone calls, people ringing, ringing, ringing – but I'm out, everything's fine." His next video, 30 minutes long, was uploaded on Tuesday afternoon, and features Mr Abazi reading his charges and bail conditions to the camera as well as holding up his $1600 fine. He said, "How can people listen to that stupidity?" in reference to Daniel Andrews' reading the daily number of deaths from COVID-19 in press conferences. "They're going to die," he said. "Why do these smart people want to make these kinds of weapons?" he said. When asked to confirm the video a police spokesman said: "Victoria Police is aware of a recurring protest which is scheduled to take place at the George Andrews Reserve in Dandenong each afternoon. "On August 24 police issued 11 fines to people who attended the protest and arrested two men. "A 48-year-old Dandenong man was arrested at the scene and has been charged with incitement and breaching the Chief Health Officer's directions." People began gathering in London's Trafalgar Square around noon and then marched to the Houses of Parliament to show opposition to the ongoing shutdowns, introduced as part of the UK's response to the pandemic. The rally, called under the slogans of "No More Lockdowns – No Social Distancing – No Masks," among others, attracted more than 10,000 people aghast at the looming prospect of another lockdown being introduced, as talk of pandemic's "second wave" dominates the media, RT reported. Footage showed demonstrators, many of whom did not wear masks, holding signs saying "No 'New Normal'" and "COVID-1984," while others outright blasted the virus as a "hoax." What didn't help the rally's reputation were the invited controversial speakers like David Icke, who gave a fiery speech proclaiming COVID-19 an "illusion pandemic" and praising the rally as an "island of sanity in a world of madness." Social media savored the quotes. "If you find yourself at a rally in Trafalgar Square arguing against the World Health Organisation... The gathering has received plenty of media backlash for not adhering to social distancing rules and not wearing masks – in fact, "take off the mask" became its rallying cry at one stage. Ironically, such worries have not been as widely expressed over the ongoing Black Lives Matter protests, which have also drawn massive attendance, with many ignoring COVID-19 guidances in the name of social justice. "How many people calling today's Trafalgar Square anti-lockdown protesters 'covidiots' said the same about the Black Lives Matter protests during the actual lockdown?" commenter Martin Daubney pointed out on Twitter. London's rally was just one in a series of recent anti-lockdown events in Europe, where increasingly many people are finding it hard to keep up with the ever-changing COVID-19 regulations and are sceptical of the difference such pandemic attributes as masks make. Even Britain's deputy chief medical officer said this week that evidence that masks protect from COVID-19 is "not very strong," despite the mandates in place. A similar protest in Berlin was disbanded by police on Saturday after they deemed demonstrators were failing to adhere to social distancing measures. Around 3,000 officers were deployed to police the crowd of 18,000.