Frustration at The Valley
Charlton 1, Saints 1
Saints’ succession of victories came to an end at Charlton, at a time when the home team are having a disastrous run of their own.
It was easy to see why The Addicks had gone down to lowly Dagenham at the weekend as they posed little threat to Saints for long periods, and the match stats show Southampton having 54% possession and forcing eight corners to just one – and that in the dying stages.
Our trouble, as we know, can come when trying to turn technical superiority into something that counts on the scoresheet, and things weren’t helped when Lallana limped out of the game before half time. It got worse when Chamberlain suffered an injury that made him withdraw as well, but Saints were now forcing the game as they attacked the visiting supporters’ end: we were just under 20% of the gate.
Do Prado replaced Chamberlain, and his corner led to the opening goal midway through the second period, although he wouldn’t have been aiming at Jaidi‘s right boot as he swung the ball in. That stirred Charlton into effective action for the first time, and they nearly equalised from a free kick that saw Llera’s effort on goal come back off the bar. Saints would have taken advantage of this let-off had Dailly’s defensive header gone past the advancing Elliot, but the keeper managed to make a desperate save with Forte lurking.
Instead it was another ex Saint who completed the scoring as Wright-Phillips sprung the offside trap to score with time running out. The ball ended up in the back of the net once again before the end, but N’Guessan looked offside, and was judged so by the linesman. As it turned out, the decision was wrong – and that just adds to the sense of a wasted opportunity felt by the strong travelling support.
LSSC Man of the Match: Lee Barnard, for his aggressive approach. However, he was substituted just after a rash challenge had brought a caution.
20 Lallana (N’Guessan 36)
26 Oxlade-Chamberlain (Guly 61)
09 Barnard (Forte 79)