Everton were unable to learn from their past mistakes as they failed to deal with the threat of Danny Ings in attack. Southampton delivered the league leaders their first loss of the season after brushing them aside at St Mary’s on Sunday afternoon.
Whilst the former Liverpool man didn’t get on the scoresheet himself, he did well to set up both goals for the Saints. His efforts take his tally for the season to an impressive four goals and two assists in six Premier League appearances, via Transfermarkt.
Southampton’s victory puts them into fifth in the table, now level on points with Leeds who currently occupy the fourth Champions League spot. Should Ralph Hasenhuttl’s side keep up this form, they could blow their expectations of a top ten finish completely out of the park.
Ings has a tremendous record against Everton, scoring more goals against them than any other team in his career. His solid performance sees Carlo Ancelotti frustrated over dropping points to a side they maybe thought they would be able to dominate. Arguably, the loss of Richarlison and Seamus Coleman hurt the Toffees and Southampton were too invested in utilising this.
As well as his two assists, Ings completed four of six dribbles, won seven duels, recorded two key passes and was successful in 100% of his attempted crosses, per Sofascore.
The 28-year-old outshone Alan Smith’s Man of the Match, Nathan Redmond, who actually received the lowest rating (6.8) of any Saints starter. He could only win 40% of his duels whilst he also lost possession 14 times.
Now Ings’ record against Everton now stands at 11 games played, with six goals and two assists notched. He has now been involved in a goal in his last three appearances in a row against the Blues, via Transfermarkt.
Hasenhuttl recently spoke in depth about Ings’ impact on the team, highlighting to Sky Sports his importance to this Saints side. Similarly, talkSPORT’s Clinton Morrison has tipped the England international to be “top-four quality” (via Hampshire Live).
This result will carry Southampton well into their next match, which will see them face off against Aston Villa, who are ahead of the Saints by just two points as it stands.
The limelight will fall on Ings and Villa star Jack Grealish, who will be battling it out to give their side another all-important three points next weekend.