Southampton came agonisingly close to coming away with something against Manchester City, but they just couldn’t find a way to counteract Raheem Sterling’s first half goal. Not only were the Saints handed a defeat on home soil, but they saw the gut-wrenching sight of Danny Ings once again leaving the pitch due to an injury.
The striker couldn’t even manage to play out the first half before he was replaced by Nathan Tella in the 41st minute.
Southampton attempted a total of nine shots with three on target, but none of these came from Moussa Djenepo, who started ahead of Stuart Armstrong and Nathan Redmond. In fact, the 22-year-old had an extremely disappointing match and was Ralph Hasenhuttl’s weak link in attack.
Although Southampton only lost by one goal, the boss will not be happy with the limited chances his side came up with. Djenepo had a torrid time trying to conjure up creative play for the Saints. According to Sofascore, he managed to complete just eight accurate passes in 57 minutes, which is 17 fewer than goalkeeper Alex McCarthy (25).
The winger, who earns £55,000-a-week, also failed to register a single attempted shot. Additionally, he lost possession seven times and was dribbled past twice. With Che Adams also struggling to make an impact on the game, the left side of Southampton’s set up was extremely weak. It’s no question why the duo were both hauled off the pitch as Hasenhuttl grew more and more frustrated with the lack of chances.
Luckily enough, the result doesn’t affect the Saints’ spot in the Premier League table and they keep their extremely respectable fourth place. They will now shift their attention to Fulham in their Boxing Day fixture on the road, which will be a match Hasenhuttl will believe he can win comfortably.