QPR Away Won 0 – 1
Saints sent out an unchanged starting XI at QPR but were forced to alter it before long; Chair had been causing problems for Bree, resulting in one quick turn too many for the full back who limped off to be replaced by Manning. After a few sometimes costly mistakes, Manning isn’t our most popular player but the advantage was that we now had Walker-Peters in his preferred position on the right. The first half was largely bereft of shots on target, although Chair didn’t miss by much from around 40 yards with an audacious lob that came close to embarrassing Bazunu. That incident was swiftly followed by a Southampton raid that was foiled by a block, one of several executed by the home defence who were protecting Begovic pretty well. Saints were to turn around in front, however, when Adam Armstrong headed a free kick into a danger area only occupied by Harwood-Bellis who swept the ball in It’s hard to work out why Saints always seem to restart poorly after having had time to think about their first half lead, and sure enough it was Rangers asking all the questions after the resumption so now it was our players working hard to keep their keeper safe. Manager Martin turned to his bench after 55 minutes, maybe five or so ahead of schedule, bringing on Charles, Fraser and Adams to revitalise a team who soon looked all the better for it. Fraser forced Begovic into a decent save while Begovic should have been made to work a lot harder to keep out Adams on the break. Preserving the lead became the main strategy when Stephens was introduced for Adam Armstrong and that was soon to prove a wise move when in the 89th minute Charles took ‘one for the team’ in collecting his second caution, although with the action deep in QPR territory, maybe the situation wasn’t that desperate. Russball kept most of the play up at the right end until a break out led to a late corner and an excursion upfield for Begovic, who already has one goal scored against Southampton on his CV. He didn’t add to it, though, and maximum points made their way back to Hampshire.
LSSC Man of the Match – three players for you to choose from.
9. Adam Armstrong. Often our best attacking option, and has an assist to his name.
21. Taylor Harwood-Bellis. Might not have been his best defensive display, but he was part of a solid unit and, of course, he won the game for us.
35. Jan Bednarek. As usual, he was our best defender.