06 February 2022

Stuart Armstrong hopes super strike sparks successful spell for Southampton

06 February 2022

Stuart Armstrong hopes his FA Cup wonder strike will be the spark for a successful second half of the season.

Scotland midfielder Armstrong has endured an injury-hit campaign, but he helped Saints to a 2-1 victory over Coventry and a place in the fifth round with a stunning 25-yard drive.

Picking the ball up around the right corner of the penalty area, Armstrong sent the sweetest of strikes with the outside of his boot across City keeper Simon Moore and into the opposite corner.

The Championship Sky Blues had taken the lead through a fine first-half goal from Viktor Gyokeres.

But Armstrong’s strike took the tie to extra time and Kyle Walker-Peters hit a late winner.

“It wasn’t the best of starts for us,” Armstrong told Saints’ website. “To be fair to them, they made it difficult for us in the first half.

“When they scored they retreated a little bit, tried to defend. But luckily we managed to get the breakthrough.

“I don’t think either team wanted to go to extra time, but that’s what it took. We’re just very happy we managed to get over the line before penalties.

“The cup is always interesting. You can never quite predict what is going to happen. Hopefully in the next round we can have a bit of a cleaner performance. But I think everyone enjoyed it.

“It was a frustrating first six months of the season for me. I’m very happy to score the first goal and help the team. The main objective is to build on that performance and stay in the team now.”

Saints’ reward for their hard-fought victory is a home meeting with West Ham in the fifth round.

Coventry will now focus on mounting a push for the Sky Bet Championship play-offs.

Boss Mark Robins said: “It was a brilliant performance just tinged with a bit of disappointment and sadness really.

“We’ve got to try and take a lot of positives from that into the rest of the season.”

The best videos delivered daily

Watch the stories that matter, right from your inbox