Saints hit 5 again!
Saints 5, Huddersfield 0
After an impressive thrashing of Walsall, it was surely too much to expect a repeat performance against a Huddersfield team unbeaten in eleven and arguably the best side we had come up against this season.
But following a tentative beginning, Saints took the lead after a quarter of an hour, with Lambert heading in off the underside of the bar. If there’s any fault in Lambert’s play at this level, it’s that he doesn’t head enough goals, but he had scored in similar fashion at Huddersfield, and that proved to be highlighting a defensive weakness for the visitors who had Neal Trotman lining up for them.
A few minutes later Barnard doubled the lead with another header, this one looping into the far corner and we didn’t have to wait too much longer for a third goal, nicely stroked home by Puncheon.
Goalkeeper Smithies might have been reflecting that he could have done better with at least one of the headed goals, but he atoned towards the end of a half in which Saints were now rampant with a spectacular save from Lambert’s free kick and a good stop, again from Lambert, that almost allowed Lallana to score on the rebound.
Even at 3-0, games still have to be closed out and a possessive approach from Saints in the second half was excusable. Huddersfield’s old weakness eventually told, though, and Hammond headed a fourth from a corner as the game entered its final stages. There was still time for N’Diaye to come on and add to the fun by completing the scoring after running on to Lambert’s lob forward and taking the ball past Smithies at the second attempt.
There was one more surprise in store as Saints introduced their number 41 for the last few minutes: someone called Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, aged 16 and the son of Pompey legend Mark Chamberlain (obviously Dad learned a lot about Hampshire football during his time at Nottarf). He was probably pinching himself at getting this unexpected chance, and he wasn’t alone as Saints fans went home in something of a dream, having seen their team net ten in just two games.
LSSC Man of the Match: Dean Hammond, his goal getting him the award ahead of Schneiderlin.
06 Jaidi (Seaborne 80)
07 Lambert (Oxlade-Chamberlain 86)
17 Barnard (Papa Waigo 78)