Southampton saw their winless run in the Premier League to six games despite two superb goals in an entertaining draw at Crystal Palace.
First, James Ward-Prowse hit a free kick into the top corner and then Armando Bruga’s shot from distance sent the visitors into the second half with the lead.
The Saints were two minutes late at Selhurst Park when Wilfried Zaha was allowed time to fire a low effort outside Willy Caballero.
Palace couldn’t build on that confident start, as Odson Edward squandered a fantastic opportunity to double Patrick Vieira’s lead.
But the striker, who made Zaha for the opening match, hit a shot across the goal in the second half and Jordan Ayew hit it from a tight angle to give the home side a point.
As a result, Palace moved up to 11th, while Southampton remained 15th, six points above the relegation zone.
Ralph Hessenhuttl must be wondering what his team will have to do to hold on to the lead, having now lost their league-highest 16 points from winning positions this season.
The answer lies in the Saints’ defense, which conceded 75 Premier League goals in 2021 – more than any other team – and is in danger of capturing the 27-year-old Ipswich Town’s record 79 goals in a calendar year.
Meanwhile, Palace have two points less than they did under Roy Hodgson at this point last season, but there is a sense that it was a pity they didn’t have more.
It was the perfect start for the rising hosts as Edward roamed through the middle unchallenged, passing a pass into Zaha’s path and beating Caballero in his near post as Southampton slipped into the penalty area.
The Eagles’ increased attacking intent has been noticeable since Vieira’s arrival, particularly at Selhurst Park, and they have now scored in eight consecutive home games in the Premier League for the first time, failing to score in a goalless draw with Brentford in August.
Edward could have doubled his lead from Zaha’s low cross but he steered away and the match suddenly turned in Southampton’s favour.
Palace goalkeeper Jack Butland, who plays for Vicente Guaita, could do nothing to stop the Saints Ward-Prowse captain for a free kick over the wall and into the corner.
The midfielder has scored more direct free kicks than any player in Europe’s top five leagues in the past two seasons, although Palace’s Will Hughes insisted he hadn’t broken Boca.
It was Ward-Prow’s fifth in that time frame and 11th overall in the Premier League, with David Beckham (18), Thierry Henry (12) and Gianfranco Zola (12) having scored the most in the competition.
And there was no controversy moments later when Brugga, on loan from Chelsea, hit the ball into the corner from distance to score his fourth goal in six matches after another Blues-owned player, Conor Gallagher, gifted the ball in midfield.
Vieira brought on Christian Benteke as Palace were looking to get back into the match and the change came within a minute.
The substitute and Edward caused confusion as the guests failed to clear the ball and Ayew ended his first goal in 43 Premier League games.
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- 6GuéhiBooked in 25 minutes
- 8koyathas been replaced byBentekein a 64 ‘Minutes
- 9J Ayohas been replaced byUlyssesin a 75 ‘Minutes
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- 21enoughBooked in 67 minutes
- 4LinkoBooked in 88 minutes
- 22salesBooked in 84 minutes
- 2Walker Peters
- 20small bonehas been replaced bygenipoin a 70′Minutes
- 8Take Prof
- 23Tilahas been replaced byWalcottin a 82 ‘Minutes
- 18Numberhas been replaced byLongin a 70′Minutes
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- Simon Hooper
Match ends, Crystal Palace 2, Southampton 2.
The second half ended, Crystal Palace 2, Southampton 2.
Willy Caballero (Southampton) shows the yellow card.
Foul by Christian Benteke (Crystal Palace).
Lenko (Southampton) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
wasted attempt. Oriol Romeu (Southampton) left footed shot from outside the penalty area is too high. With the help of Musa Djenebo.
The Corner, Crystal Palace. Against him, Mohamed Salisu.
Joachim Andersen (Crystal Palace) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Foul by Shane Long (Southampton).
wasted attempt. Joel Ward (Crystal Palace) right-footed shot from the center of the penalty area is high and wide to the left. With the help of Conor Gallagher.
Linko (Southampton) received a yellow card for a bad foul.
Odson Edward (Crystal Palace) won a free kick in the defensive half.
Linko (Southampton) Fault.
Joel Ward (Crystal Palace) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Moussa Gnebo (Southampton).
Foul by Conor Gallagher (Crystal Palace).
Moussa Djenebo (Southampton) won from a free kick in the defensive half.
Mark Gehey (Crystal Palace) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Error by Theo Walcott (Southampton).
Muhammed Salisu (Southampton) received a yellow card for a bad foul.
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