A heroic performance from goalkeeper Fraser Forster was not enough to prevent Southampton falling to a 1-0 defeat at Arsenal on Wednesday night, with Alexis Sanchez’s late strike sealing the three points for the home side.
Forster produced one of his best performances since arriving at the club this summer to keep the score at 0-0 into the final few minutes, but the Saints had to finish the match with 10 men after Toby Alderweiereld limped off injured after all three substitutes had been made.
The former Celtic stopper was finally beaten in the 89th-minute by Sanchez’s scrambled effort, and admitted after the match that the result was hard to take.
“It’s harsh losing right at the end,” he told the club’s official website. “I thought we’d done enough for 0-0 but it wasn’t meant to be. We were maybe missing that little bit of luck that we needed and then we went down to ten men with Toby going off injured.
“It’s hard enough 11 against 11, but there are plenty of positives to take from that. If we play like that in the majority of the games, then we’ll pick up a lot of points.
“It was nice to contribute, I’ve probably been underworked with how good the team has been through the first ten games,” he added. “It is important when they do get through I do my best to help the team and hopefully I did that tonight.
“They are a top quality side. They move the ball well and to play the last ten minutes with ten men is always going to be really hard. It is a bit cruel but we can hold our heads high.”
Fans were certainly pleased with the England international’s showing, with many taking to Twitter after the match to hail his contribution.
At the moment I'll rather Fraser Forster as England number one than Joe Hart. Fine form. #SFC— Daniel-Jack Dixon (@DJDixon90) December 3, 2014
Fraser Forster again proving he's England's best goalkeeper, without a shadow of a doubt. #SFC— Dan (@ArsenaIDan) December 3, 2014
Fraser forster his the highest number of clean sheet in the league he showed his class once again tonight he is no fluke #saints— Swankyluv (@Moviic_) December 3, 2014
In my opinion Forster should replace hart as England keeper, and that's not based just on this game— Hassan M (@HassanMuzammal) December 3, 2014
I cannot believe how amazing Forster is. Hope he stays for a while. Absolute quality time and time again. #saintsfc— Southampton USA (@Southampton_USA) December 3, 2014