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Southampton v Stoke - story of the match

Southampton suffered a 1-0 home defeat to Stoke in what may prove to have been Claude Puel's final game as manager.

The Saints hierarchy had revealed plans to review his position at the season's end, offering him minimal support, and after their latest defeat and inability to score for a fifth straight game at home, may act despite finishing eighth in the Premier League.

Increasing hostility from the club's supporters will also add further pressure on the Frenchman's position, who lost courtesy of a header from Peter Crouch that lifted Stoke to 13th.

TWEET OF THE MATCH

"Hope Puel is not booed today. A decent man, worked hard for club&delivered poss 8th and EFL final. Doesn't deserve nasty treatment #saintsfc" - Southern Daily Echo journalist Adam Leitch's (@adamleitchsport) fears were confirmed as Puel received hostile treatment from some Saints fans.

STAR MAN

Jack Butland. The Stoke goalkeeper was making only his fifth appearance of an injury-ravaged season, but recovered from a first-half mistake that almost led to a Southampton goal to repeatedly deny the hosts with a variety of saves that earned a clean sheet.

IN WITH THE CROWD

In addition to Southampton's supporters booing the under-pressure Puel's substitutions midway through the second half, they chanted at the manager "You don't know what you're doing" and "Attack, attack, attack". Stoke's section joined in with "You're getting sacked in the morning".

HIGHLIGHT OF THE MATCH

With his back to goal from around 40 yards, and under pressure with minimal time, Nathan Redmond classily turned and chipped the out-of-position Butland, and was unfortunate as his impressive effort bounced off the crossbar and out of play. The quality involved was something of which Xabi Alonso, Andrea Pirlo or David Beckham would have been proud.

PLAYER RATINGS

SOUTHAMPTON

Fraser Forster: 7/10

Cedric Soares: 6

Maya Yoshida: 5

Jack Stephens: 6

Ryan Bertrand: 7

Oriol Romeu: 7

James Ward-Prowse: 7

Steven Davis: 7

Nathan Redmond: 7

Dusan Tadic: 5

Charlie Austin: 5

Subs

Manolo Gabbiadini (for Austin, 65mins): 6

Sofiane Boufal (for Tadic, 65mins): 5

Jeremy Pied (for Cedric, 86mins): 5

STOKE

Jack Butland: 8

Geoff Cameron: 7

Ryan Shawcross: 6

Bruno Martins Indi: 7

Erik Pieters: 7

Glenn Whelan: 6

Joe Allen: 7

Mame Biram Diouf: 6

Xherdan Shaqiri: 7

Ramadan Sobhi: 6

Peter Crouch: 8

Subs

Jonathan Walters (for Diouf, 70mins): 5

Marc Muniesa (for Shaqiri, 90+2mins): 5

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