Southampton 3 Leeds 2
By planetfootball.com staff
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
The Saints conclusively proved they had not already switched their focus to their Millennium Stadium showdown with Arsenal by tearing apart ten-man Leeds at St Mary's.
The prolific James Beattie was a constant thorn in the side of Whites defenders Michael Duberry and Danny Mills and gave the pairing the runaround on the South Coast.
Southampton took the lead on 31 minutes when Paul Robinson could only push Anders Svensson's shot out and Brett Ormerod reacted quickest to score.
The hosts were further ahead on the stroke of half-time when Beattie latched onto Ormerod's flick on to deftly place the ball past Robinson.
Beattie was proving unplayable and his surging run down the right flank was the source for the third goal as his cross was controlled by Anders Svensson before the Swede dispatched the ball beyond Robinson.
Leeds' hopes of staging a fightback were dented when the volatile Alan Smith was sent off for the ninth time in his career after kicking out at Michael Svensson.
Harry Kewell handed The Whites a lifeline with ten minutes remaining despite appearing to be offside. The SocceRoo thought so himself but decided to carry on and amazingly the goal was allowed to stand.
Nick Barmby bagged another consolation in injury-time but it was too little, too late for Leeds, with anything other than a home win a travesty of justice.