Southampton fought hard and showed resilience in their second match in the Etihad in just a matter of days but came up with no points to show for it.
The fight was there. Players were throwing their bodies in front of every shot and did all they could to thwart the sometimes omnipotent attack of Man City.
It is a performance to not hang your head in and if the lads can play like that moving forward they should start collecting some points and moving away from the bottom of the table.
The match ratings will be just a little bit better than for the last league match.
Managers, Goalkeepers, and Defenders
Ralph Hasenhuttl – 7.0
This was never a match people expected the team to win but for but for 73 minutes, the Saints were leading the defending league champions and looked stout. This rating is not based off the result but the performance of the players. In the match against Leicester, in all my years of watching sport, I have never seen a team give up quite like they did that evening.
In just over a week Ralph got the players to fight for the badge again and play something that resembled football and we have to be encouraged by that and back this man as our manager. Everton will be a big match and one where we need a result and I except the boys to fight in that match like they did on Saturday.
Alex McCarthy – 6.5
It is hard to judge McCarthy’s performance because only a few of City’s shots actually found the target and the two goals that were conceded there was not much he could do about them. Despite that, he looked confident and was ready to attack and catch any cross that came too near to his neat and I believe he will be in net for the next few matches as Gunn regains his confidence.
Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg – 6.75
If this was the first time somebody had watched Saints and saw Hojbjerg’s performance at Left-Back they would have probably thought that it was his natural position. Outside of a few mistakes, mostly due to being out of position, the Captain was brilliant and put in a quality shift in a position he has only played a number of times. Hopefully next time we see him back in the midfield.
Jannik Vestergaard – 7.0
I would be lying if I said I was able to keep count of the amount of clearances this man had on Saturday. It seemed like every time City sent the ball into the box he was there to meet it and smash it clear. He put his large frame to good use and really had a solid performance. If this is the player we get every week from here on out it would be hard to take him out of the backline.
Jack Stephens – 6.5
Two refreshing performances from the Englishman in the cup and in the league. He showed a will to defend and now may be in option in the back moving forward. Stephens has had an up and down time recently at the club and it was good to see him playing well and confidently once again.
Jan Bednarek – 6.75
The Polish International looked more himself on Saturday than in the previous league matches. Moving forward, if the players want to turn things around and start getting back in the win column Bednarek is going to be a key player in that. We need our best centre-back to perform the way we know he can and this was a step in the right direction.
Yan Valery – 6.5
Quite simply, Valery was absolutely dreadful in the match against Leicester and I do not think anyone knew what to expect out of him coming into this match. But, the youngster showed up and in my mind had a pretty solid performance. I have always thought highly of the Frenchman and he showed glimpses of the player he can be when going up against the likes of Raheem Sterling and Bernardo Silva. He can still improve a lot but this was a good performance for the 20-year-old.