Bournemouth 1-3 Southampton: Jay Rodriguez double seals south-coast spoils
By Jack Wilkinson
Last Updated: 18/12/16 8:25pm
Jay Rodriguez's first Premier League double in more than two-and-a-half-years was the difference as Southampton came from behind to beat south-coast rivals Bournemouth 3-1 at the Vitality Stadium.
Rodriguez put the Saints ahead on 48 minutes, converting from close range after great work from substitute Steven Davis, before he made sure of victory with a thunderous drive five minutes from time.
Nathan Ake had given Bournemouth an eighth-minute lead but, after Ryan Bertrand's fine equaliser on 14 minutes, the Cherries were second best as Southampton claimed only their second away win of the season.
The result sees Claude Puel's men climb up to seventh in the Premier League, three places and three points ahead of Bournemouth who remain in 10th.
Eddie Howe recalled Callum Wilson into the Bournemouth line-up after he missed Tuesday's victory over Leicester, while Puel make six changes to the Southampton side that were held to a goalless draw by 10-man Stoke on Wednesday.
And the wholesale changes appeared to have an effect on the Saints as Bournemouth drew first blood on six minutes.
Ake ghosted in front of Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg at the far post to head Jack Wilshere's cross beyond Fraser Forster, scoring his third goal in his last six Premier League appearances.
It was a landmark goal for Wilshere too as he registered his first league assist since September 2014.
But the Cherries' lead was short-lived as Bertrand singlehandedly broke down the left, checked inside Adam Smith, past Simon Francis and rifled the ball past Artur Boruc.
The goal steadied Saints and they should have taken the lead on 30 minutes, but Nathan Redmond sliced Bertrand's fine cut-back wide.
Francis' poor clearance presented Redmond with another chance to put Saints ahead on 46 minutes, but the winger dithered in possession, allowing a block to take the sting out of the shot on its way through to Boruc.
Having been brought on at half-time, though, substitute Davis was more alert and delivered the impact his manager wanted as the Saints hit the front.
The Northern Irishman gathered Sofiane Boufal's back-heel to get in behind the Bournemouth defence, committed Boruc into a dive before chipping the ball towards goal where Rodriguez converted into the unguarded net.
Bournemouth had the chance to respond immediately but Wilson steered a first-time shot onto the roof of the Southampton goal after Joshua King's break.
Boruc was on hand to deny Rodriguez a second after he robbed the ball off Steve Cook on 57 minutes, before Ake blocked Hojbjerg's goal-bound volley off the line 10 minutes later.
Bournemouth continued to offer little by means of a reply as Redmond whistled a dipping effort just over on 80 minutes.
And the game was finally put beyond the Cherries as Rodriguez instinctively turned on the edge of the area and lashed an unstoppable drive into the back of the net, sealing his first Premier League double since March 2014.
Bournemouth: Boruc (6), Francis (5), Steve Cook (5), Ake (6), Daniels (4), Arter (5), Wilshere (6), Adam Smith (5), King (6), Pugh (5), Callum Wilson (5).
Used subs: Afobe (4), Fraser (4), Ibe (4).
Southampton: Forster (6), Cedric (5), Yoshida (6), van Dijk (7), Bertrand (8), Reed (4), Clasie (6), Hojbjerg (5), Boufal (5), Rodriguez (9), Redmond (6).
Used subs: Long (n/a), Davis (8), Tadic (5).
Man of the Match: Jay Rodriguez