skip to content
The referee brings the game to a close.
The ball is swung over by Adam Lallana.
Jack Cork is brought on as a substitute for James Ward-Prowse.
Corner taken by James Ward-Prowse.
Adam Lallana takes a shot and went wide left of the target.
The referee shows Steve Sidwell a yellow card for unsporting behaviour.
Free kick awarded for a foul by Steve Sidwell on Victor Wanyama.
Luke Shaw makes a clearance.
Clearance made by Luke Shaw.
Free kick taken by Artur Boruc.
Unfair challenge on Adam Lallana by Kieran Richardson results in a free kick.
Foul by Scott Parker on Adam Lallana, free kick awarded.
Steve Sidwell takes the chance to get an effort at goal and missed to the left of the target.
Corner taken by Alex Kacaniklic from the left by-line.
(Fulham) makes a substitution, with Alex Kacaniklic coming on for Bryan Ruiz.
The assistant referee flags for offside against Rickie Lambert.
Clearance by Aaron Hughes.
Free kick awarded for a foul by Dimitar Berbatov on Dejan Lovren.
Guly Do Prado replaces Jay Rodriguez.
Aaron Hughes makes a clearance.
Free kick crossed by Bryan Ruiz.
Morgan Schneiderlin challenges Bryan Ruiz unfairly and gives away a free kick.
Free kick taken by Aaron Hughes.
Darren Bent leaves the field to be replaced by Hugo Rodallega.
Free kick awarded for a foul by Jay Rodriguez on Pajtim Kasami.
Corner taken by Bryan Ruiz.
Bryan Ruiz crosses the ball.
The referee blows for offside against Rickie Lambert.
Shot by Jay Rodriguez went wide of the right-hand post.
James Ward-Prowse sends in a cross.
Morgan Schneiderlin restarts play with the free kick.
Clearance made by Fernando Amorebieta.
Free kick taken by Philippe Senderos.
Bryan Ruiz fouled by Victor Wanyama, the ref awards a free kick.
Scott Parker makes a clearance.
Clearance by Bryan Ruiz.
Centre by Rickie Lambert.
Jay Rodriguez takes a shot and missed to the right of the net.
Dejan Lovren restarts play with the free kick.
Scott Parker manages to make a clearance.
The ball is crossed by Luke Shaw.
Dimitar Berbatov is flagged offside by the assistant referee.
Kieran Richardson delivers the ball.
Clearance made by Kieran Richardson.
Corner taken by James Ward-Prowse from the right by-line.
Kieran Richardson takes a weak shot and missed to the left of the goal.
Pajtim Kasami fouled by Victor Wanyama, the ref awards a free kick.
Rickie Lambert takes a weak shot and went wide of the left-hand upright.
The ball is delivered by Luke Shaw.
The referee gets the second half underway.
The half-time whistle blows.
Scott Parker takes the free kick.
(Fulham) makes a substitution, with Aaron Hughes coming on for Sascha Riether.
Free kick awarded for a foul by Fernando Amorebieta on Adam Lallana.
Adam Lallana takes a shot. Blocked by Philippe Senderos.
Jay Rodriguez scores a headed goal. Southampton 2-0 Fulham.Assist by Rickie Lambert.
The ball is crossed by Adam Lallana.
Corner from the left by-line taken by James Ward-Prowse.
Centre by James Ward-Prowse.
Corner taken by Bryan Ruiz from the left by-line.
Free kick awarded for a foul by Victor Wanyama on Pajtim Kasami.
Unfair challenge on Pajtim Kasami by James Ward-Prowse results in a free kick.
Rickie Lambert takes a shot. Scott Parker gets a block in.
Clearance made by Philippe Senderos.
The ball is swung over by Luke Shaw.
Shot by Luke Shaw. Blocked by Philippe Senderos.
The ball is sent over by James Ward-Prowse.
Victor Wanyama gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Pajtim Kasami.
Philippe Senderos takes the free kick.
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Philippe Senderos by Rickie Lambert.
Rickie Lambert is flagged offside by the assistant referee.
Clearance made by Dimitar Berbatov.
Rickie Lambert grabs a goal with a headed effort. Southampton 1-0 Fulham.Assist by Jay Rodriguez.
The ball is swung over by James Ward-Prowse.
Victor Wanyama takes a shot and went wide of the left-hand post.
Free kick taken by Jose Fonte.
The assistant referee flags for offside against Darren Bent.
Centre by Luke Shaw.
Clearance by Dejan Lovren.
Luke Shaw challenges Steve Sidwell unfairly and gives away a free kick.
The ball is sent over by Pajtim Kasami.
Adam Lallana is caught offside.
Nathaniel Clyne sends in a cross.
Free kick awarded for a foul by Victor Wanyama on Scott Parker.
Morgan Schneiderlin has an effort at goal. Fernando Amorebieta gets a block in.
The ball is crossed by Nathaniel Clyne.
James Ward-Prowse fouled by Pajtim Kasami, the ref awards a free kick.
Free kick taken by Steve Sidwell.
Morgan Schneiderlin gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Pajtim Kasami.
Philippe Senderos makes a clearance.
The game gets underway.
Pochettino hails Ward-Prowse
Southampton midfielder James Ward-Prowse has been hailed as the perfect model for the club's future by manager Mauricio Pochettino.
The 18-year-old came on as a substitute against Manchester United last weekend and inspired his team to a deserved draw at Old Trafford.
The Saints could surge into the top four in the Barclays Premier League if they beat Fulham on Saturday and other results go their way, with Pochettino praising the contribution of Ward-Prowse.
Pochettino told reporters: "James Ward-Prowse is basically an example of the player we are promoting, the player we want to have in this club. In every training session he gives 100 per cent. He always has an immediate impact in what he does and he is still a player who is growing. He is a figurehead of the sort of player we are looking for at Southampton.
"I am a person who has always given a lot of value to the youth teams in clubs. I was a player who came out of the youth ranks in one of the best youth Academies in Argentina.
"Also, when I was managing Espanyol, I was a manager who always liked to push through that Academy culture. I really value the younger players in any club.
"One of the main reasons I actually signed for Southampton was the fact that they wanted to push through that Academy system. They wanted to reinforce and that went very well with how I view the future of a football club."
Ward-Prowse, who scored his first England Under-21 goal earlier this month, converting a free-kick in a 5-0 win against Lithuania, came on against United for Northern Ireland captain Steven Davis, who picked up a slight knock and is a doubt for the Fulham game.
But if Ward-Prowse is the epitome of Southampton's vibrant football this season then it is the defence, which boasts the best record in the Premier League with just three goals conceded in comparison with 24 at the same time last season, which is the main factor in their success.
Much of that can be put down to the meticulous planning under Pochettino and the double training sessions he has instigated.
A win on Saturday, against a Fulham side buoyant from their 4-1 victory against Crystal Palace on Monday, would give Southampton their best-ever start to a season.
"I don't really think about that," said Pochettino. "I just think about winning and having my players playing as well and as positively as I want them to play.
"We know it is a very long competition and a very long season and we know that statistics in the end are just statistics but don't really mean anything, so the most important thing is how high up we are in the table at the end of the season. That's what really counts."
He will not be taking Fulham lightly.
Pochettino added: "Fulham are a team that know how to play football. They have talented players and have been using a 4-2-2 system and defending very deep."
Captain Brede Hangeland is expected to miss out for Fulham due to a nerve injury in his leg.
Manager Martin Jol said the centre-back will probably sit out the game at St Mary's while midfielder Bryan Ruiz (back) is doubtful.
Defender Aaron Hughes could make his first appearance since August 31 if he overcomes a thigh injury, but full-back Matthew Briggs (hernia) is still out.
Jol has told Darren Bent he can force his way in to Roy Hodgson's World Cup squad if he starts finding the net on a regular basis for Fulham.
Bent has scored three goals since joining Fulham on loan but he linked up well with Dimitar Berbatov on Monday night as the Cottagers subjected Crystal Palace to a damning 4-1 defeat.
The 29-year-old featured in England squads during the early stages of his career at Charlton and also when he was at Tottenham, Sunderland and Aston Villa.
He has not donned the famous white shirt for two years, however, and Hodgson has turned to the likes of Rickie Lambert and Jermain Defoe during recent injury crises.
Jol thinks Hodgson will not be able to carry on omitting the former Charlton man in the run up to Brazil if he carries on scoring, however.
"You never know," the Fulham boss said when asked about Bent's chances of making the plane for Brazil.
"(Selection) can be a spur of the moment thing because if Bent scores five goals in the final month of league then he could be in contention again to be selected.
"Bent is one of best finishers in England, he is like Defoe. And Defoe has a big chance to go to Brazil I think and Danny Welbeck is probably similar. They are all good players."
© 2004 - 2015 football.co.uk