Southampton cast aside their dreadful recent form to record an impressive 3-1 win against Crystal Palace at St Mary’s on Tuesday evening, with Ralph Hasenhuttl’s side playing with the freedom you’d expect from a team mathematically safe from relegation.
Although it was a dreadful start from the hosts, with Christian Benteke firing the Eagles in front with just two minutes on the clock, Southampton fought back and equalised through Danny Ings, who found the back of the net on his return from injury.
Fraser Forster saved Luka Milivojevic’s weak penalty at the end of the first half before an early second-half goal from Che Adams put the Saints in front, with Ings later adding a third to seal the victory.
Whilst the strike duo were instrumental in the win, a lot of credit must go to captain James Ward-Prowse, who well and truly ran the show from midfield.
As per SofaScore, the England international would earn an impressive 7.6/10 rating for his display, with only Ings (7.9) and Adams (8.7) rated higher.
During the game, the 26-year-old midfielder would register 107 touches of the ball, which was comfortably the most of any player who featured in the game.
He also completed 75/80 passes, which again was the most of any player and his 94% pass accuracy rate is a vast improvement on the 86.3% he has averaged in the Premier League this season.
Ward-Prowse’s four key passes were also unmatched and is significantly more than the 1.5 key passes he has averaged in the top-flight, which emphasises just how impressive he was at St Mary’s on Tuesday night.
He also played a big part in Southampton’s second goal as his well-worked corner routine led to Adams turning in at the back post, whilst he was unfortunate not to score with a free-kick of his own in the first half.
The Saints academy graduate also contributed effectively from a defensive point of view, completing three tackles, which again, is a big improvement on the 1.9 he has averaged in the Premier League so far this season.
Therefore, whilst Ings and Adams scored the goals, it was a superb all-round display from Ward-Prowse and he definitely ran the show from midfield.
And, in other news… Semmens disaster: Saints missed out on “perfect” gem with 18 G/A