Southampton destroyed Newport 8-0 in the Carabao Cup, recording the biggest away win in the club’s history.
What had been considered a tricky task given Newport’s reputation as a giant killer became a breeze as Saints improved on various 6-0 away wins over the years.
Mohamed Elyounoussi scored a hat trick and Armando Broja scored twice, while Nathan Tella, Kyle Walker-Peters and Nathan Redmond also scored as Saints advanced into the third round. They go to the Sheffield United championship team.
Newport manager Michael Flynn was absent after testing positive for coronavirus, and the architect of so many Cup upsets was sorely missed by the exiles.
Rodney Parade has been a graveyard for several Premier League teams for the past few years, but a new, pristine playing surface, in use for the first time, was perfect for Southampton.
Saints had improved their defensive ranks over the past 24 hours when Torino’s center-back Lyanco and Everton’s full-back Thierry Small moved to St. Mary’s.
But the draw came too soon for the pair to be involved, as boss Ralph Hasenhüttl made nine changes to the team that drew at home against Manchester United on Sunday.
Skipper James Ward-Prowse and defender Jack Stephens were the only players to greet a significant crowd again as League Two at Newport for the first time since March 2020.
Elyounoussi had already signaled the Saints’ offensive intent before Broja marked his loan from Chelsea with a debut goal after nine minutes.
Redmonds Rammstein was hit the crossbar by Newport’s goalkeeper Nick Townsend and Albania striker Broja blocked the rebound from close range.
The excellent Redmond pulled Southampton’s strings and it was his pass in the 25th minute to Elyounoussi that started the move that Tella confidently finished.
Walker-Peters and Redmond should have got the guests out of sight before the former did as the game neared halftime.
The ball was quickly shifted left for Walker-Peters to shoot deep and hard into the near post – the full-back’s second goal and his first in Southampton colors.
Elyounoussi scored twice shortly after the break before Broja scored the sixth goal with his stylish finish.
Redmond added a seventh after 69 minutes and Elyounoussi completed his hat-trick with the final kick as Southampton clinched its biggest win since World War I.