Southampton put in a performance that should have merited more than just a one goal advantage after the first leg of the League Cup semi-final against Liverpool at St Mary’s.
After a cagey start Roberto Firmino forced Fraser Forster into a smart save but that was as close as Liverpool would come in a tepid first half from the away side.
Nathan Redmond’s close range effort was superbly kept out by Loris Karius with an outstretched leg and just moments later that same man profited from a scuffed Ragnar Klavan clearance, allowing Jay Rodriguez to play in Redmond who finished with aplomb from 12 yards.
Liverpool may have dominated possession, but it was Southampton making all the chances, as Karius thwarted Redmond once again late in the first half, following a brilliant square ball from Dusan Tadic.
After the interval the Reds were on the front foot, only to see their territorial dominance amount to very little goalmouth action.
But for a smarter decision from Cedric Soares when he was released into acres of space and had Rodriguez screaming for the ball at the back post and a perilously close Redmond chance that hit the woodwork after brilliant play from substitute Shane Long, it should have been a healthier scoreline for the hosts.
However, it was not to be as both sides will ready themselves for an evenly poised return semi-final leg at Anfield in a fortnight.
Here are the best reactions from Saints fans following the result:
But the only criticism is that we should have scored at least three or four goals but we can’t seem to get the ball in the net 🤔#saintsfc
— Sommer 🍁⛄️❄️ (@SommerGuy38) January 11, 2017
Puel played that to a tee tonight. Best performance of the season imo, could regret not getting a bigger lead though #saintsfc
— Andy Robinson (@saintandy7) January 11, 2017
Brilliant team performance tonight! Can’t fault anything (well, maybe someone’s finishing – but i’ll let it slide..) Excellent! #saintsfc
— Dan (@my_nameis_dan) January 11, 2017
Did the important part, kept a clean sheet and took an advantage. They have to come on to us and that will leave em vulnerable #saintsfc
— Daniel (@HolyHojbjerg) January 11, 2017
— Nate Dagogo (@ODagogo) January 11, 2017
— Scott Douglas (@SaintScott76) January 11, 2017
Fantastic result well done the Saints but too many missed chances. Hope that doesn’t bite us in the 2nd leg #saintsfc
— steve (@24hrfromcroydon) January 11, 2017
— Ben Newton (@Bennew05) January 11, 2017
— Lewis Coombes (@LEWIS_C) January 11, 2017
Is it just me, or did the squad/team look more focused and galvanised tonight – after the Fonte situation been made public… #SaintsFC
— Floki75 (@wazlee75) January 11, 2017
Had a feeling we would play better, but if that does not show we need an out and out striker nothing will, should be out of sight #saintsFC
— 🦍Gazzy🦍 (@MrGToYou) January 11, 2017
Van Djik, Redmond & Romeu, all brilliant. #saintsfc
— Chris Mitchell (@Chrismitchell76) January 11, 2017