It was a night to forget for Southampton fans as Leicester ran riot, setting a new Premier League record for the biggest ever away win.
Hat-tricks from Jamie Vardy and Ayoze Perez, as well as goals from Ben Chilwell, Youri Tielemans and James Maddison secured a 9-0 win for the Foxes at St. Mary’s, setting a new record for the biggest ever away win, surpassing Manchester United’s 8-1 victory over Nottingham Forest in 1999. The result also matched the record for the overall record, a 9-0 win for Manchester United against Ipswich Town in 1995.
It only took the away side 10 minutes to break the deadlock, with Ben Chilwell converting after an Angus Gunn save from winger Harvey Barnes. However the Saints’ early problems did not end there, with a VAR check after the goal leading to a straight red dismissal for Ryan Bertrand, having clearly shown that he had dragged his studs down Ayoze Perez’s shin.
Leicester’s second goal came down the left again, with Harvey Barnes skipping away from challenges by Yan Valery and Oriol Romeu, before his pass inside was deflected off the boot of Valery into the path of Tielemans, who netted his third of the season.
It was only a matter of moments before Leicester extended their lead once again with Ayoze Perez playing a neat one-two into the Southampton penalty area with Tielemans before the Spaniard emphatically converted past Angus Gunn to get his first Premier League goal for the Foxes.
There were warning signs again in the 35th minute as another attack down the Leicester left flank resulted in a Harvey Barnes shot, which squeezed through Gunn before the Saints goalkeeper managed to grab hold of the loose ball just in time. Leicester didn’t have to wait long for a fourth as Chilwell curled in an inch-perfect cross, picking out Perez at the back post, who smashed it into the roof of the net to double his tally.
Jamie Vardy also got in on the act just before the interval. James Ward-Prowse headed a cross from Chilwell over his own centre-back and straight into the path of Vardy who sidestepped Mayo Yoshida and smashed the ball in for Leicester’s fifth of the evening.
Leicester were the only the second ever Premier League side to go into the dressing room at half-time with a five goal advantage, the first being Manchester City in 2010 against Burnley. However Southampton’s misery wasn’t to stop there as the visitors put four more past them in the second half.
The first of the Foxes’ second-half goals came as Ayoze Perez latched onto the end of a delightful cross from Harvey Barnes, with the Spaniard completing his hat-trick with a powerful finish from close-in.
It was only a matter of seconds before Leicester made it seven. Once again, Chilwell and Barnes combined down the Foxes left, before the England full-back stood the ball up for Vardy at the near post who made no mistake with his header.
A quiet period of the game, in which Leicester dominated without scoring, was ended in the 85th minute by a stunning free-kick from James Maddison who whipped the ball into the top corner from 20 yards out.
However the Foxes weren’t done there and deep into injury time, Vardy broke through the Saints defence once more before being scythed down by Jan Bednarek in the box. The 32-year-old made no mistake from 12 yards sealing not only his hat-trick but also the record Premier League away win.
Although nothing should be taken away from an incredible Leicester performance, it was a remarkably poor showing from Southampton, who looked disorganised and naïve at the back with a number of mistakes costing them greatly. Saint’s manager Ralph Hasenhuttl apologised to the fans after the final whistle, saying:
I take 100 per cent responsibility for this result today… The best thing in the stadium – besides the opposition – were the crowd who stayed in the stadium. How they act is more than we deserve, and I apologise for this no performance today.
The Austrian went on to say:
We were not committed enough and with how strong Leicester were, we just couldn’t defend against it. If you ask me if I’m shocked tonight… I’ve never had such an experience in my entire managing career… We have to stand up again and show a different face.
The record 9-0 loss sees the Saints slip into the bottom three on goal difference and they will not get any respite in their next two fixtures as they face Manchester City twice at the Etihad next week, first in the Carabao Cup on Tuesday, followed by a Premier League fixture on Saturday.