Watford Away Won 1 – 3
A sunny, if breezy, Sunday afternoon, first pint of Downlands Best Bitter poured and ready, sound turned down on the telly to avoid the Sky commentary, Johnnie Walker on the radio… only Saints could spoil things – and this being an away game, they didn’t let anyone down, You didn’t need TV sound to recognise that we were all over Watford like a rash and an overdue reward came on 16 minutes thanks to one of our own, Ings, firing his side ahead, although my trusty 19″ tube screen (if it ain’t broke, don’t replace it) couldn’t quite show the ball nestling in the corner of the net. Ward-Prowse might have added a second just before the drinks break in an exceptional 45 minute performance, aided by the Downlands, now about to be replaced by Jaipur IPA of more serious strength. Saints had two sent off players under suspension, but Vestergaard filled Stephens’ position well, keeping Deeney in his pocket, and despite having Smallbone and Romeu in for Armstrong and the injured Højbjerg, we kept to a 4-4-2 shape. The home team had their own self-inflicted wounds, choosing to do without three players for alleged lockdown violations, showing that it doesn’t do to get on the wrong side of manager Pearson. His starting eleven were surely on the end of some harsh words at half time and they looked much more purposeful afterwards, but Saints defended resolutely, if a bit too deeply, and in fact denied their opponents a shot at McCarthy through the entire match. I noted a couple of games back that the drinks interval isn’t quite long enough for a comfort break, and so it proved as I ran back downstairs just in time to see Ings slip the ball past Foster, helped by a convenient deflection off Dawson – it seems that keeper had conveniently thrown the ball out to Danny to set up the situation. That handy 2-0 cushion lasted less than ten minutes as Bednarek poked the ball into his own net in an attempt to prevent Holebas’ cross finding Welbeck. A flurry of goals continued when Dawson brought down substitute Adams and Ward-Prowse stepped up to beat Foster with a sublime free kick for the second time this season. It was now a question of how many but Redmond struck the post and Adams was denied his elusive goal by Foster. Eight away wins (and counting) – pity we could only see six of them in the flesh.
LSSC Man of the Match: Danny Ings for his double strike.