Southampton 0 Leicester 9: Manager Ralph Hasenhuttl apologises to fans after 'disastrous' record defeat

Hat-tricks for Jamie Vardy and Ayoze Perez in incredible Premier League match

SOUTHAMPTON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 25: Jamie Vardy of Leicster City celebrates after scoring his team's fifth goal with Youri Tielemans and Ayoze Perez during the Premier League match between Southampton FC and Leicester City at St Mary's Stadium on October 25, 2019 in Southampton, United Kingdom. (Photo by Naomi Baker/Getty Images)
Powered by automated translation

Ralph Hasenhuttl apologised to Southampton's fans and took full responsibility for the "disaster" of being thrashed 9-0 by high-flying Leicester on a historic night of Premier League action.

Hat-tricks from Ayoze Perez and Jamie Vardy paved the way for rampant Leicester  to equal the biggest win in Premier League history and inflict the worst loss in Saints' 134-year existence.

Goals from Ben Chilwell, Youri Tielemans and James Maddison contributed to an astonishing scoreline at St Mary's as Brendan Rodgers' visitors climbed to second in the table.

Saints left-back Ryan Bertrand also made history by becoming the first top-flight player to be sent off following a VAR review after a dangerous lunge at Perez in the build up to Chilwell's 10th-minute opener.

The early dismissal undoubtedly had a significant impact on the home side's fortunes but it could not excuse the embarrassing capitulation which followed, leaving Saints manager Hasenhuttl to take the blame.

"My reaction is that I must apologise for this performance. I take 100 per cent responsibility for what happened today," said the Austrian.

"This was absolutely no-go in any way and I want to say that I am proud of the fans - they were staying in the stadium until the end of the game - because it was not easy to watch it for anybody who is following us.

"I think they did it quite well until the end to stay here and to stay with us. We have to apologise for what happened today and stand up again. You can call it helpless, you can call it whatever you want. It was a disaster.

"In my entire life, I haven't had a game like this and I also thought that this cannot happen. It's 12 or 13 years now as a head coach and it was an experience I never had in my life so far."

Before the game, Hasenhuttl called for his side to grind out a "dirty win" to give their success-starved home supporters a first victory at home since April.

But even before the drama of the opener and Bertrand's deserved dismissal, in-form Leiceter appeared to be a cut above.

Hasenhuttl said an inquest into the embarrassment would have to wait. "I think it's not the moment to go into details now. Everybody saw what happened today and, after the red card, every attack was a goal, nearly," he said.

"There was no defending at all. If they didn't pass the pass, we did it for them. When you act like this, you cannot be surprised about conceding nine goals."

Captain Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg added in a video posted to the club's Twitter account: "If I speak from the heart, I don't think it will end very well. I can only apologise. It's very embarrassing and it's very difficult for the whole team.

"We are the ones to blame. You need to blame us, we need to take it. I'm sorry. The only thing I can say to the fans is I apologise."

In contrast, Leicester boss Brendan Rodgers could not have been more elated. "It was the perfect performance. From the very first whistle in the game we showed our intent," he said.

"I'm so pleased with the performance, it had everything you could want. We went in front, deservedly so. And then when Ryan got sent off, we showed a wonderful demonstration of how to play against 10 men. The players made it look a lot easier than it actually is.

"All round collectively it was an absolutely outstanding night and brilliant for the supporters to travel all the way down here on a wet night. To see the team score nine goals and be very focused, hopefully they will be very proud. It's a brilliant win that equals records."

Perez and Vardy became only the second set of team-mates to score trebles in a Premier League after Jermaine Pennant and Robert Pires managed it against Southampton for Arsenal in May 2003. They each left the stadium clutching a match ball.