Leicester Home Won 3 – 0
When an upcoming League Cup semi final put paid to Monday night football against Leicester, I didn’t expect having to get up early on a Sunday morning to scrape ice off the car in order to make a noon kick off. But the timing seemed to suit Saints as they recorded their first league win, indeed points, since the last Sunday lunch outing, at Bournemouth. The outgoing champions were put under pressure from the start and Redmond’s header over the bar was just the best of several early chances. Saints usually go on to rue such wasted opportunities but a run down the right by Soares set up Ward-Prowse for a shot that he swept past Schmeichel. The lead was more than deserved and it was doubled before the break when Rodriguez took advantage of some static defending after an uncleared corner to score from close range. Hojbjerg was one of those off target in the first half, and he was guilty of a bad miss when the visitors presented him with a golden opportunity to seal the game early in the second period. Again you wondered whether this would be costly, but Leicester are a shadow of last year’s side and they rarely threatened; unfortunately when they did, Vardy managed to catch Van Dijk’s ankle as they both went for a cross, and the new Saints skipper eventually had to limp out of the game, and possibly the semi final as well. Understandably the focus was now on preserving a clean sheet as Stephens filled in at centre back, but a third goal seemed to have arrived when Morgan headed a Ward-Prowse free kick past his own keeper; after discussions the goal was disallowed due to a marginal offside against Yoshida, the debating point apparently whether our player was interfering with play. The eventual scoreline was indeed a well-earned 3-0 win when substitute Long outpaced the hapless Morgan, who had missed his side’s best chance, only to be brought down for a penalty smashed home by Tadic, an abandonment of his usual style for the occasion.
LSSC Man of the Match: James Ward-Prowse, mainly for an outstanding first half performance.