Danny Ings scored his 21st Premier League goal of the season to lift Southampton to a 2-0 win on Sunday, pushing Bournemouth closer to relegation in the process.
Che Adams added a second deep in stoppage time to confirm all three points for Saints after Bournemouth thought they had equalised only for VAR to rule the goal in what had been a nervy finish.
Bournemouth looked poised to score first after controlling the opening 20 minutes of the game, but failed to put an effort on target against a stingy Southampton defence that was without first-choice centre back Jan Bednarek.
Southampton, however, struck against the run of play when Kyle Walker-Peters spearheaded a counter attack up that set up Ings to cut in from the left before swinging a right-footed shot into the bottom corner.
The 41st-minute tally pulled Ings within two of Leicester’s Jamie Vardy in the race for the golden boot. The forward then had a chance to get closer, but saw his second-half penalty saved.
Southampton was awarded a penalty when VAR adjudicated that Harry Wilson had handled the ball in the area and Ings’ attempt from the spot found the grasp of Aaron Ramsdale.
Wilson nearly found a late equaliser only for Alex McCarthy to make a fingertip save in added time.
Bournemouth found the back of the net through substitute Sam Surridge five minutes into added time, but Callum Wilson was deemed to be in an offside position by VAR in the build up to the goal.
Adams ensured that Southampton improved to 49 points from 37 games, which is the club’s best return since the 2016/17 season, with the last kick of the game.
Bournemouth’s fate would be confirmed if Watford was to get a point from either of their last two remaining games — against Manchester City and Arsenal. The Cherries stand a slim chance otherwise, but would have to overturn their goal difference on the last day to clip the Hornets.
Bournemouth: Ramsdale, Rico, Kelly, S. Cook, Stacey, Stanislas (Solanke 68), Lerma (Surridge 82), Billing (Gosling 87), Brooks (H. Wilson 46), King (L. Cook 68), C. Wilson
Unused subs: Boruc (GK), Surman, L. Cook, Danjuma, Solanke
Bookings: Billing (47), L. Cook (78)
Southampton: McCarthy, Bertrand, Stephens, Vestergaard, Walker-Peters, Romeu (Hojbjerg 77), Ward-Prowse, Armstrong, Redmond, Long (Adams 66), Ings (Obafemi 90+4)
Unused subs: Gunn (GK), Danso, Valery, Vokins, Sallbone, Ferry
Goals: Ings (41), Adams (90+6)
Bookings: Vestergaard (34), Ward-Prowse (90+3)