Clasie makes debut as Southampton sweep Groningen aside
Ronald Koeman returned to former club Groningen on Saturday and saw his Southampton side produce confident performance in a straightforward 3-0 win, handing Jordy Clasie his debut in the process.
Koeman, who made his professional debut as a player at Groningen in 1980, had seen Southampton lose each of their three previous pre-season friendlies, though victory never looked in doubt this time around, with Dusan Tadic starring on his return to Euroborg.
Southampton, who are deep into their pre-season preparation, named a starting XI combining a mixture of youth and experience and appeared to be in charge right from the start.
Victor Wanyama worried Groningen when he headed Steven Davis’ 20th-minute corner against the crossbar and the hosts failed to heed that warning, as Jose Fonte nodded in from their next set-piece just four minutes later.
Koeman introduced Clasie for his debut at the break, but it was another of the newcomers – Cedric Soares – who helped provide Southampton's second, linking well with Tadic before teeing up Sadio Mane for an easy finish in the 52nd minute.
And Tadic was at the centre of things again 20 minutes later, as the former Groningen star worked an opening for Graziano Pelle, who made no mistake in front of goal.
Up next for Saints is a trip to Hoofdklasse side Quick’20 on Tuesday.