Matt Le Tissier is known to the Southampton faithful as ‘Le God’ after he spent his entire 17 year career with the Saints scoring over 100 Premier League goals in the process.
At the end of the 2000/2001 season, Southampton were due to leave behind their iconic stadium ‘The Dell’ to move to their new home St Mary’s stadium. The last ever match at The Dell would take place between Southampton and Arsenal on the 19th of May, 2001.
Matt started the match on the bench but as he reveals in an interview with me on Football CFB, he felt that he was destined to leave one final mark on the iconic venue.
“Going into the game, I just knew if any chance fell to me – no matter how difficult it was – that I would take it and that I would be the last person to score at The Dell.
So when that happened in the 88th minute of that famous match, it was just the best feeling. The adrenaline rush and the noise from the stadium was twice as load as the noise of a goal being scored that I’d ever heard at any stadium and any game that I had played in.
It was ridiculous. I can then remember that we had another attack after my goal and Chris Marsden had a shot that looked like it was going to go in until the keeper just managed to tip it over the cross bar. I was jogging across to get the ball for the resulting corner and I remember having the urge to go and give the goalkeeper a cuddle as I didn’t want anyone else to score the last goal at The Dell.
Luckily, I restrained myself from doing that and I jogged over to take the corner. When I got to the corner flag, I then said to myself that I couldn’t put the ball into the box because someone might score and I want to be the last person to score at The Dell.
So, I put the ball on the spot and waited a little bit until Wayne Bridge came short for the ball. As soon as I passed it to Bridgey, the full time whistle was blown by the ref and I was delighted. That’ll do was my immediate reaction.