“He was brilliant” - Southampton manager heaps praise on Aribo after his winning goal against Birmingham

Southampton manager heaps praise on Aribo || Imago

“He was brilliant” - Southampton manager heaps praise on Aribo after his winning goal against Birmingham

Stephen Oladehinde 18:26 - 03.03.2024

Southampton's midfielder, Joe Ayodele Aribo, emerged as the hero of the night, securing a dramatic 96th-minute goal to clinch all three points for the Saints.

Russell Martin, the head coach of Southampton, showered praise on Aribo following his match-winning performance.

Russell Martin's Praise

Russell Martin expressed his admiration for Aribo's contribution, particularly emphasizing his brilliance during the crucial moments of the game. 

"I love all the players so I don’t mind who gets the winner. Aribo was brilliant today and unlucky not to start after the Liverpool game on Wednesday," stated the Southampton manager, as reported by Soccernet.

He reflected on Aribo's impact and acknowledged his unfortunate absence from the starting lineup in previous matches.

In a high-stakes encounter against Birmingham, with just twenty minutes remaining on the clock and facing ten-men opposition, Martin made the decisive move to bring Aribo onto the field in pursuit of an equalizer. 

The decision proved fruitful as a corner kick in the dying seconds of the game resulted in Taylor Harwood-Bells' shot finding Aribo, who calmly slotted the ball into the bottom left corner, securing victory for Southampton and dealing a blow to Mark Venus' side.

Aribo's late heroics have propelled Southampton within three points of Daniel Farke's Leeds United, signalling their determination to ascend to the summit of the English top flight.

Joe Aribo || Imago
Joe Aribo || Imago

Aribo's Impact on the Field

Aribo, 27, who has faced limited game time both at club and international levels this season, showcased his prowess when it mattered most. 

Despite starting just eight games for Southampton and featuring sparingly for Nigeria during the AFCON 2023 tournament, Aribo's recent performances have highlighted his undeniable talent. 

With two goals in his last five appearances for Southampton, the former Rangers man has proven his goalscoring ability and value to the team.