A two-week break has come at the right time for Saints after skipper Adam Lallana left St Mary’s on crutches after the win over Reading.

The influential midfielder also had his knee in a brace, after hurting it when Royals midfielder Jay Tabb accidentally fell into him in the first half.

Lallana, who was in clear discomfort, was eventually able to limp off the pitch, but had to be substituted.

Manager Nigel Adkins said the club planned to assess the injury at training yesterday, as well as this morning.

“He’s got a knee injury and we put it in a brace as we always do, immobilised the joint, put him on crutches, let it settle down and assess it in the next 24 or 48 hours,” said Adkins.

Centre half Maya Yoshida, who appeared to jar a knee during the second half, was also reported to have left the stadium on crutches.

The Japan international did, however, finish the full 90 minutes despite any problem.

Saints will hope that the extra recovery time before their next game will allow both players to heal.

The club are not in action until Saturday, December 22, when they host fellow strugglers Sunderland.

Saints had been due to visit Chelsea next weekend, but that fixture is being rescheduled as the European champions have Club World Cup duties to conduct.

Adkins revealed after Saturday’s match that goalkeeper Paulo Gazzaniga should return to training before the visit of Sunderland, after being ruled out against Reading by a shoulder injury.