Brighton Hove Albion Away Won 0 – 2
It was no surprise to see Kevin Danso selected to make this Southampton debut at Brighton but for it to be at left back was unexpected. Bertrand missed the trip through injury and Yoshida also missed out in a reversion to a flat back four to accommodate both Ings and Adams. Although tough tackling Saints enjoyed plenty of possession, presenting the front two with an opportunity was proving difficult, and handling a pot shot from Redmond was the only action Ryan in the home goal saw in the opening period. Meanwhile Albion did actually get the ball in the net, a powerful header by Dunk ruled out by VAR, as Saints seemed confident it would be – with good reason as Burn managed to be in an offside position when committing a foul on Gunn. The game, though, had turned in Southampton’s favour thanks to an horrific 30th minute tackle on Valery by Andone that brought an immediate red card. Ralph claims that the challenge on his right back had nothing to do with his being replaced by Djenepo before the hour, but it did give the side a lopsided look, with Ward-Prowse obliged to fill in at the back while Danso and Djenepo shored up the other flank. The main thing was to get Moussa on the pitch and he responded with a goal within two minutes, cutting inside to fire a right foot shot past Ryan in a moment reminiscent of Mané’s strike against us in the previous game. (A word too, at this point about referee Kevin Friend: usually our nemesis, but he didn’t rely on VAR to dismiss Andone and now applied a fine advantage decision early in the scoring move). A second goal to ensure the win should have been provided by another substitute, Armstrong, when put through by Redmond but a heavy touch made Ryan’s save easier, and it could have proved costly but Locadia struck the post in a late rally by the ten men. Instead Boufal came off the bench to set up an added time second by crossing for Redmond to slide in at the far post and set Saints’ season running..
LSSC Man of the Match: Jan Vestergaard. Well Brighton gave their award to the similarly built Dan Burn and he seemed to contribute far less than our man.