Saints 0-0 West Bromwich Albion
Ronnie K kept an unchanged starting line-up after an encouraging display at Liverpool, but his pre-match comments suggested that taking on West Brom at home would present different challenges: “they will come to defend as well as counter attack.” An accurate enough analysis, but the opportunity to counter it with a more imaginative selection was missed.
As it was, we had to wait over half an hour for Saints’ first threat of any kind, and that was thanks to Foster’s ill advised excursion from his goal that left Tadić with a choice of shooting from an narrow angle, and with a covering defender, or try to find Pelle with a cross. He chose the latter, but Pelle got as much change out of his encounter with the Baggies’ defence as against Škrtel and Lovren at Anfield.
Tadić had the only other moment of note from the opening period, a toe poke scrambled away by Foster. Multi-million pound buy Shane Long replaced Davis for the second half, but neither player received much service in a half where Southampton’s best effort was from a set-piece: Ward Prowse scraping the post with his free-kick.
Albion have their own big money signing in Brown Ideye, also soon introduced to the game and with more impact. A header into the side netting after Forster decided not to commit to a teasing cross was followed by the game’s only truly memorable moment when a dragback took Fonte out of the game, only for Forster to save the Nigerian’s shot with an outstretched leg.
LSSC Man of the Match: Frazer Forster, largely because our outfield players were so ineffective, but he did make that important save and handled his crosses well. He will have busier days, though.