Rickie header lights up a dull game
Saints 1, Carlisle 0
Saints were without Schneiderlin for the second successive game, and that does seem to cause us problems – at one point we had Richardson in midfield at Peterborough, but no-one seemed to know why. The difficulty at London Road had been stopping goals, but it was a problem at the other end at home to Carlisle, and one that has surfaced a few times this season.
Early signs were promising that a line-up with Lambert and Do Prado up front and N’Guessan playing opposite Chamberlain would cause Carlisle problems, but the first half ended with just one save each for the respective goalkeepers.
The key moment was odd as it came after Butterfield clearly overhit a pass towards the corner flag. Borrowdale, recently signed on loan, panicked at the thought of Chamberlain running on to it, and pulled the winger back. Such a pre-meditated offence is a caution in today’s game, and Borrowdale duly received one; his second of the match – reports that the sending off was for abusing the assistant are less likely to be true as that ought to have been a straight red card.
A home goal swiftly followed, with Lambert benefitting from the missing defender as he headed home after tenacious work by Chamberlain.
Chaplow was rested for the second half just in case his earlier booking counted against him, and the talismanic Lallana made a welcome return. Surely this Southampton formation would add to their total against 10 men? Unfortunately not, as passes went just too far to the left, right, behind or ahead of their target, while Collin made a full length save to deny Chamberlain.
Forte and Barnard were tried in an effort to ease the frustration, but Barnard was fortunate to remain on the pitch until the end after a particularly poorly timed challenge.
A number of late free kicks saw the visitors always in with a chance when the giant defender Michalik made his way upfield, but Saints made sure that one goal was worth three points.
LSSC Man of the Match: Dean Hammond. Without Schneiderlin from the start and Chaplow for most of the game, he found himself solely responsible for the dirty work in midfield.
30 Chaplow (Lallana 46)
32 N’Guessan (Forte 79)
07 Lambert (Barnard 76)