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Leicester 1-2 Southampton: Hasenhuttl says Long ‘deserved’ first goal in nine months

Southampton's Shane Long
Shane Long made it 2-0 to Southampton with his first goal since April

Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhuttl said Shane Long "deserved" his first goal in nine months as the Saints won at Leicester despite spending the entire second half with 10 men.

Long scored Southampton's crucial second goal in first-half stoppage time at the King Power Stadium, his first in 22 appearances, as the Saints moved out of the Premier League relegation zone.

"I said to Shane, 'You deserve to score today because you worked so hard in the week'," Hasenhuttl told BBC Sport. "He is quick and has good headers. It was a really good game for him.

"I know he hasn't got the best finishing record but I know previously he scored 10 to 12 times. I want to bring him back into this shape."

James Ward-Prowse gave Southampton an early lead from the penalty spot after Long was bundled over in the area by Nampalys Mendy.

Saints defender Yan Valery was then shown a second yellow card for a foul on Marc Albrighton before Long doubled their lead shortly before the break.

Wilfred Ndidi scrambled home Ricardo Pereira's cross to bring Leicester back into the game at the start of the second half, but Southampton held on for a priceless victory.

The three points lift Southampton above Newcastle and Cardiff into 16th place. Leicester drop one to eighth.

It is a third win in seven Premier League games for new Saints manager Hasenhuttl, who punched the air with delight at the final whistle.

His side were forced to defend on the edge of their own penalty area for the entirety of the second half, but the Southampton backline was superbly marshalled by Jannik Vestergaard, Jan Bednarek and Jack Stephens.

"I'm unbelievably proud of my players," added Hasenhuttl.

"To be manager of this team, it's a fantastic job. Today they showed their quality. To go 2-0 in the lead at Leicester is not easy and we defended with fantastic commitment."

The boos at the final whistle are unlikely to ease the pressure on Leicester boss Claude Puel, who had demanded a response from his side following last weekend's FA Cup defeat at League Two Newport.

Instead his team were timid from the outset and despite dominating possession in the second half, rarely looked like threatening Alex McCarthy in the Southampton goal.

Long ends drought to secure precious victory

Long would probably not have started this game were it not for injuries to fellow strikers Danny Ings, Charlie Austin and Michael Obafemi.

The 31-year-old had failed to hit the back of the net for Southampton since a 3-2 defeat by Chelsea at the start of April and has largely been consigned to the bench this season.

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Ralph Hasenhuttl 'unbelievably proud' of brave Saints

But after being restored to the starting line-up for last week's FA Cup draw with Derby, Long retained his place and chose the ideal time to score just his second goal in 36 appearances for club and country.

The former Hull, West Brom and Reading striker more than played his role in a disciplined Saints performance as the visitors looked to defend deep before hitting Leicester on the counter.

They were helped on their way by some sloppy defending by the Foxes, with Mendy needlessly bundling Long over in the area to allow Southampton to take the lead from the spot.

Mendy and Pereira then failed to deal with a routine goal-kick, allowing Long to steal in and double the away side's lead seconds before the half-time whistle.

Moments before that goal, teenage defender Valery, who up to that point had been impressive down the Southampton right, was deservedly sent off for a needless tug on Albrighton.

However, Long's goal had given Southampton the buffer they needed to launch a spirited defensive effort in the second half.

Bednarek was at the heart of Southampton's defensive work, making more blocks and clearances than any other Saints player while defensive partner Vestergaard won 100% of his aerial duels.

Pressure increases on beleaguered Puel

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Boos from Foxes fans 'not my concern' - Claude Puel

Puel came out fighting in the build-up to this game as he vigorously defended his team selection in the defeat at Newport.

He restored many of his senior players to the starting line-up against Southampton, including James Maddison, Harry Maguire and Jamie Vardy.

But instead of sparking a response, the Foxes made a timid start as they struggled to break down a stubborn Saints rearguard.

They only created one opportunity of note in the first half, when Wes Morgan's scrambled effort from Ben Chilwell's free-kick was cleared off the line by Bednarek.

Ndidi's scuffed finish should have set the platform for a fightback shortly after the break, but the Foxes failed to carve out many clear-cut openings.

Instead they were restricted to shots from distance, with Maguire responsible for two of their six shots on target while Vardy failed to have a shot on goal at all.

It is only three weeks since Leicester secured memorable back-to-back victories against Chelsea and Manchester City, but the boos at the final whistle highlighted the discontent currently simmering among their fanbase.

Stewards removed some small "Puel out" banners before kick-off but their presence suggests the Frenchman has much to do if he is to convince some fans he is the right man for the job.

Man of the match -Jan Bednarek (Southampton)

Southampton defender Jan Bednarek
It was heroic defensive effort from the entire Southampton team but Jan Bednarek was particularly impressive, making more blocks and clearances than any other Saints player

'I want to work with these players' - what they said

Leicester City manager Claude Puel, speaking to MOTD, is asked if he feels under pressure: "It's not my concern, no comment. I'm just focused and concentrating on my team.

"I want to work with these players. It's football. The fans are like us - disappointed and frustrated."

On the result: "It's a big disappointment. We wanted to give a good response after the FA Cup against Newport.

"It's difficult to accept the second goal we conceded. We had a lot of chances and opportunities. It was important to try and manage this game with intensity in our passes. It was difficult to be clinical and maybe we needed a bit more movement in the box.

"It's important to find good moves and understanding and communication."

Saints win on the road again - the stats

  • Leicester City's last three Premier League defeats have come against sides starting the day in 16th (Crystal Palace), 17th (Cardiff City) and 18th (Southampton).
  • Southampton have won two of Ralph Hasenhuttl's four away games in the Premier League (D1 L1), as many victories on the road in the competition as in Mark Hughes' full tenure at the club (P12 W2 D3 L7).
  • In matches involving Leicester City in the Premier League this season, there has been nine red cards shown (four for, five against), the most of any club in the division.
  • Wilfried Ndidi has scored two goals in his last 13 Premier League appearances for Leicester, as many strikes as in his first 59 matches in the competition.
  • Southampton's Yan Valery (19y 324d) is the youngest ever player to be sent off in a Premier League match for the Saints.
  • James Ward-Prowse has scored each of the three penalties he's taken in the Premier League - among current players in the competition, only Danny Ings and Junior Stanislas (4/4) have a better 100% ratio from the spot.

What's next?

Southampton host Championship side Derby in an FA Cup third round replay on Wednesday (19:45 GMT) before another home game in the Premier League against Everton next Saturday (15:00 GMT).

Next up for Leicester is a trip to Molineux to take on Wolves in the lunchtime kick-off next Saturday (12:30 GMT).

Line-ups

Leicester

  • 1Schmeichel
  • 14Ricardo Pereira
  • 5Morgan
  • 15Maguire
  • 3ChilwellBooked at 35mins
  • 38ChoudhurySubstituted forGhezzalat 76'minutes
  • 24MendySubstituted forBarnesat 45'minutes
  • 25Ndidi
  • 11AlbrightonSubstituted forGrayat 45'minutes
  • 9Vardy
  • 10MaddisonBooked at 20mins

Substitutes

  • 2Simpson
  • 4Söyüncü
  • 7Gray
  • 8Iheanacho
  • 12Ward
  • 19Barnes
  • 31Ghezzal

Southampton

  • 1McCarthy
  • 35Bednarek
  • 5StephensBooked at 54mins
  • 4Vestergaard
  • 43ValeryBooked at 45mins
  • 14Romeu
  • 16Ward-Prowse
  • 33Targett
  • 22RedmondSubstituted forGallagherat 90+3'minutes
  • 17ArmstrongSubstituted forCédric Soaresat 57'minutes
  • 7LongSubstituted forSlatteryat 76'minutes

Substitutes

  • 2Cédric Soares
  • 11Elyounoussi
  • 15Gallagher
  • 28Gunn
  • 39Sims
  • 55Slattery
  • 66Ramsay
Referee:
Michael Oliver
Attendance:
31,491

Match Stats

Home TeamLeicesterAway TeamSouthampton
Possession
Home72%
Away28%
Shots
Home23
Away8
Shots on Target
Home6
Away3
Corners
Home10
Away3
Fouls
Home7
Away9

Live Text

Match ends, Leicester City 1, Southampton 2.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Leicester City 1, Southampton 2.

Attempt missed. Wilfred Ndidi (Leicester City) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by James Maddison with a cross following a corner.

Substitution

Substitution, Southampton. Sam Gallagher replaces Nathan Redmond.

Corner, Leicester City. Conceded by Callum Slattery.

Attempt blocked. Demarai Gray (Leicester City) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Ben Chilwell.

Offside, Leicester City. Ben Chilwell tries a through ball, but Jamie Vardy is caught offside.

Attempt blocked. Harvey Barnes (Leicester City) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Demarai Gray.

Corner, Leicester City. Conceded by Jack Stephens.

Offside, Southampton. Alex McCarthy tries a through ball, but Nathan Redmond is caught offside.

Offside, Leicester City. Ricardo Pereira tries a through ball, but Jamie Vardy is caught offside.

Attempt missed. Wilfred Ndidi (Leicester City) left footed shot from outside the box is too high. Assisted by Demarai Gray.

Attempt missed. James Maddison (Leicester City) right footed shot from outside the box is too high.

Attempt blocked. Rachid Ghezzal (Leicester City) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Ricardo Pereira.

Attempt missed. James Maddison (Leicester City) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right.

Attempt blocked. Wilfred Ndidi (Leicester City) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by James Maddison.

Substitution

Substitution, Leicester City. Rachid Ghezzal replaces Hamza Choudhury.

Substitution

Substitution, Southampton. Callum Slattery replaces Shane Long.

Attempt blocked. Harvey Barnes (Leicester City) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by James Maddison.

Corner, Leicester City. Conceded by Cédric Soares.

Attempt saved. Harvey Barnes (Leicester City) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Harry Maguire.

Foul by Hamza Choudhury (Leicester City).

Shane Long (Southampton) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Attempt missed. Jamie Vardy (Leicester City) header from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by James Maddison with a cross.

Attempt missed. Harry Maguire (Leicester City) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by James Maddison.

Attempt blocked. James Maddison (Leicester City) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Ricardo Pereira.

Foul by Ricardo Pereira (Leicester City).

Nathan Redmond (Southampton) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Corner, Leicester City. Conceded by Jan Bednarek.

Harvey Barnes (Leicester City) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Jan Bednarek (Southampton).

Goal!

Goal! Leicester City 1, Southampton 2. Wilfred Ndidi (Leicester City) left footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Ricardo Pereira.

Substitution

Substitution, Southampton. Cédric Soares replaces Stuart Armstrong.

Attempt blocked. Jamie Vardy (Leicester City) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Harvey Barnes.

Attempt missed. James Maddison (Leicester City) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Harry Maguire following a set piece situation.

Attempt blocked. James Maddison (Leicester City) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

Booking

Jack Stephens (Southampton) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

James Maddison (Leicester City) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Jack Stephens (Southampton).

Attempt saved. James Maddison (Leicester City) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Harry Maguire.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Liverpool22183150104057
2Man City21162356173950
3Tottenham21160546212548
4Chelsea22145340172347
5Arsenal22125546321441
6Man Utd21115543321138
7Watford229583232032
8Leicester229492625131
9West Ham229493032-231
10Wolves218582325-229
11Everton217683131027
12Bournemouth2183103140-927
13Brighton2275102430-626
14Crystal Palace2264122028-822
15Burnley2263132343-2021
16Southampton2247112339-1619
17Cardiff2254131941-2219
18Newcastle2246121631-1518
19Fulham2235142049-2914
20Huddersfield2225151337-2411
View full Premier League table

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