Southampton failed to mount a second half comeback as they were beaten at home by Bouremouth 3-1, the first time in the club’s history.
The Saints were second best throughout the first half, and deservedly fell behind in the opening ten minutes after Diego Rico’s corner was headed home by Nathan Ake. The visitors continued to capitalise on Southampton’s sluggish start as Joshua King found Philip Billing, and his clever reverse pass to Harry Wilson was capped off with a smart finish as Bournemouth doubled their lead. The Saints were then lucky not to concede another; the hosts had VAR to thank as King’s effort was ruled out for offside.
The Saints improved somewhat after half time, and eight minutes after the break pulled one back. Steve Cook’s careless challenge on striker Che Adams resulted in a penalty for the Saints, which was duly converted by James Ward Prowse. The Saints were then fortunate to not have a penalty against them as Cedric Soares tangled with King inside the box, but luckily for the hosts this one was overlooked by VAR.
Southampton huffed and puffed in the closing stages but could not find an equaliser, and were undone in the dying embers of the game through a defensive error. Miscommunication between defender Jan Bednarek and goalkeeper Angus Gunn culminated in an open goal for Callum Wilson, who wrapped up the points for Bournemouth.
Saints boss Ralph Hasenhuttl bemoaned the slow, sloppy and sluggish first half display, which cost the Saints from picking up any points: “The first half was too bad to get a point. We lost this game in the first half. We haven’t showed a few of the qualities we showed in the last games. The second half was completely different. We really tried to stress them, we won nearly every second ball and 26 shots on goal in 90 minutes is also not so bad, but these stats are not so interesting.”
Next up for the Saints is the mouth watering South Coast derby against Portsmouth on Tuesday, in the Carabao Cup.