Saints 1-2 Tottenham Hotspur
Lambert returned to the starting line-up to face a Spurs team who welcomed back Bale after paternity leave. The ex-Saint soon found himself with the dilemma of knowing whether to do that silly thing he does with his hands when he scores, or just shrug off a goal against his old club in the modern style.
It was a bit of both after a 15th minute opener, but the really observant would also have seen Clyne holding his head in his hands after allowing a free header. Sloppy defending has characterised Saints’ dreadful start to the season, but the whole team contributed to a woeful first half performance that ended with them two down after Boruc failed to close down Defoe early enough and Fonte slipped when trying to clear the loose ball – Dempsey applied the coup de grâce from point blank range, after which Boruc seemed to enter into a war of words with fans behind the Chapel End goal.
In fact Spurs could have been further ahead, and they gave every indication of adding to their lead after the break as well, until Saints rediscovered their pride with the introduction of Mayuka with 32 minutes left. Yoshida still won’t be sure about how he failed to score in the mêlée after a free kick, but when Fonte’s back heel at the resulting corner was saved, Rodriguez was on hand to break his own Premier League duck.
Southampton were now looking the more likely to score, and didn’t need the late substitutions that only seemed to break up their rhythm at a crucial time. Tottenham had begun to appear very ordinary, but Saints weren’t able to overturn the deficit conceded in the first hour of the match, and overall they didn’t deserve to.
LSSC Man of the Match: Danny Fox, mainly for some good deliveries. Didn’t save him from being substituted, though.