Wolves Home Lost 2 – 3
No surprise to see an unchanged side chosen after a famous away victory, and with visitors Wolves in a poor run of form, hopes were high for a fourth home win of the league campaign to match the four on the road. It wasn’t that easy against opponents always prepared to take the game to you but Saints took the lead, and via a most unlikely route as Bednarek produced a controlled sidefoot volley when Ward-Prowse’s free kick found its way through a host of players. If Bednarek can score, so can Long, and his first of the season was just as good, a fine glancing header from a Soares cross. So far so good, then, despite a warning when Jiménez managed to put the half’s best opportunity past the post. With only two goals conceded in games against Chelsea, Palace, Spurs and Leicester, our vulnerabilities at the back have been largely forgotten but they came back with a vengeance in the second half of this game, with Traoré’s move to the right being most influential. After 53 minutes, Traoré found a gap that turned into a chasm after Stephens inadvisably committed himself and Neto was given time to control and convert a cross against an outnumbered defence. It didn’t take long for things to get worse, and again Stephens was involved – this time combining with Soares in a challenge on Otto that saw none of the three players getting anywhere near the ball, and although referee England turned down penalty appeals, he was over-ruled by VAR for Jiménez to put his team level… then he went on to put them ahead with an unhurried finish from another Traoré assist, with VAR now failing to rescue Southampton in a review advertised on the scoreboard as being for handball, but more likely to have been looking at offside. Saints were certainly not done at the other end and Long had grazed the post with a headed chance that could have made it 3-0 before Redmond now bounced a fine shot from distance against the bar. When Patrício dropped a cross the ball just wouldn’t fall to a home shirt, then Stephens sent a header just past the post before deep into added time a corner fell to substitute Boufal who had plenty of blocking defenders to beat with his shot, but didn’t give them a chance with an effort that went high over the target. So no points at all in a game we expected to win, and thought we had won at the interval.
LSSC Man of the Match: James Ward-Prowse, always providing good deliveries, but for once they failed to provide Ings with a clear chance.