The feeling at St Mary's is that results have not reflected performances this season, and they certainly had reason to feel pick-pocketed yesterday.
As a decisive second remained stubbornly unforthcoming, Craig Fagan seized on a long clearance and played in Ellison down the left. The lanky Liverpudlian advanced into the box, and his shot clipped the inside of the post on its way past Antti Niemi.
"Our play's good," said their manager, Harry Redknapp. "The build-up is good. We open teams up, but we can't put the ball in the back of the net. They're sitting there waiting for one mistake and we made it."
The former Southampton manager Gordon Strachan once compared Claus Lundekvam's predatory instincts unfavourably with those of a corpse, and it was hard not to think of that assessment when the Norwegian failed to score from a foot out after Michael Svensson's header had been saved by Boaz Myhill.
He was not the only guilty party, though. Even Matt Oakley, who gave Southampton the lead a minute before the break with a superb 25-yard drive, had earlier managed to spoon over the bar from six yards.
"Every game's been like that this season," Redknapp said. "God knows how many corners and 13 shots off target, but the ball won't go in."
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