As Southampton gear up to kick start the new season at home to Swansea on Saturday, we take a look at how the sides fared last time out at St Mary’s.
The last time Saints and Swansea met at St Mary’s, Claude Puel claimed his first home win in the league, thanks to a strike from Charlie Austin coming off the bench.
This victory back in September of last season came off the back of a 3-0 win at home to Sparta Prague in the Europa League and was Puel’s second win in charge of the Saints.
Saints lined up with the diamond formation, and a starting line-up which looked as follows:
Forster, Cedric, Fonte (c), Van Dijk, Bertrand, Romeu, Davis, Clasie, Tadic, Long, Redmond.
The first half saw little action bar Shane Long wrongly being awarded a yellow card for diving and Nathan Redmond missing a golden opportunity as he skied the ball from 12-yards out, unmarked over the crossbar.
As the second half came, Saints dominated and started creating more and more chances. However, as was the story throughout last season, they were wasteful.
In the 54th minute, Puel made a double substitution, taking off Shane Long and Jordy Clasie for Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg and Charlie Austin.
Within minutes came Charlie Austin’s chance to miss a golden opportunity as a ball from Redmond across the face of the six-yard box saw Austin slide in and smash his effort against the bar.
Then finally the break through came, as a deflected cross from Dusan Tadic off Kyle Naughton found its way to Charlie Austin, eight-yards out, who chested the ball and smashed the ball into the back of the net on the half-volley.
The rest of the game saw Saints continue to dominate comfortably except for the last minute. Fraser Forster had to make a clever save from Borja Baston and the rebound was then cleared by Oriol Romeu.
Ahead of the game on Saturday, I would expect a similar dominant performance from Saints, but hopefully there will be less chances wasted!