Southampton’s goal scoring woes continued, as they were held to a 0-0 draw against an inspired 10-man Stoke City at the bet365 Stadium.
A frustrated Marko Arnautovic was shown a straight red card after just 23 minutes following a high-challenge on Sofiane Boufal, which led to persistent jeers towards referee Anthony Taylor from Stoke fans.
Jay Rodriguez had Southampton’s best chance in the second half, but the visitors, however, were unable to take advantage of the extra man and have now returned just four goals from their last eight outings.
Though Saints, who made four changes from Sunday’s side, moved into 9th in the Premier League table with the result whilst Stoke slipped to 12th.
Joe Allen had a chance on six minutes to give Stoke the lead against the run of play when he broke in on goal following a clever ball by Xherdan Shaqiri, but Fraser Forster prevented the goal with his legs.
Sofiane Boufal, who scored in tremendous fashion at the weekend, forced Lee Grant into action with a left-footed effort that caught the keeper’s grasp in the 10th minute.
Arnautovic was then given his marching orders after a reckless challenge left Boufal on the deck, which happened just inside the Stoke half.
Southampton lost a bit of their opening edge following the sending off with the Potters dictating the tempo, but they grew back into the game after halftime.
Erik Pieters helped the ball to safety from Nathan Redmond’s flick on from a corner kick before it’s was ultimately cleared to safety in the 55th minute, as Stoke’s defence strengthened.
Ryan Bertrand tried to make good of the space awarded when he struck from 25-yards out only for the shot to be palmed away by Grant at full stretch.
An unselfish Boufal then tried to pick out substitute Rodriguez at the back post on 68 minutes, but the striker could not get a foot to the ball.
Stoke: Grant, Johnson, Shawcross (c), M. Indi, Pierters, Whelan, Adam (Muniesa 88), Shaqiri (Diouf 57), Allen, Arnautovic, Walters.
Unused subs: Given (GK), Imbula, Crouch, Bojan, Bony.
Bookings: Arnautovic (RC 23), Allen (35).
Southampton: Forster, Bertrand, van Dijk, Fonte (c), Martina (McQueen 83), Romeu, Davis, Ward-Prowse, Redmond (Rodriguez 66), Boufal, Long (Tadic 66).
Unused subs: Taylor (GK), Yoshida, Clasie, Hojbjerg.
Bookings: Romeu (27), Ward-Prowse (93).