LEICESTER 0 - SAINTS 0

Daily Echo: OUT OF MY WAY! Rampaging Saints centre back Michael Svensson goes forward to cause mayhem in the Leicester defence. OUT OF MY WAY! Rampaging Saints centre back Michael Svensson goes forward to cause mayhem in the Leicester defence.

GOALS, goals,goals!

Well, there weren't any at the Walkers Stadium on Saturday.

Saints manager Harry Redknapp knows what he wants - he just can't find them.

But then it was never likely to be a striker's feast in this match with both sides struggling in front of goal.

The Foxes went into the match having netted just 16 in the league in as many games, just three less than Saints.

And that was the way it stayed.

For two sides keen to relive former Premiership glories, neither did enough to convince supporters of their cases.

Saints, could and, according to Redknapp, should have done better. But the final ball was missing and Redknapp was again left kicking his heels in frustration.

"We don't score enough goals," he said.

"We had some great counter-attacking situations where we only had to slide someone through.

"If people had timed their runs better we could have had some great opportunities to score - but we didn't, we wasted them.

"I couldn't see us getting beat after the first ten minutes. I felt there was a game for us to win."

Leicester were without suspended eight-goal top-scorer Mark de Vries but it didn't seem to matter as his replacement Elvis Hammond kept Claus Lundekvam, Michael Svensson and keeper Antti Niemi on their toes with two early efforts.

At other end, young Theo Walcott looked dangerous straight away, being caught offside three times in the early exchanges.

Ricardo Fuller, meanwhile, shot low and wide from 25 yards.

After 18 minutes Fuller went on a searching run inside and found Neil NcCann wide on the left and unmarked. McCann took too long on the ball and, when he did shoot, it was deflected and Fuller was unable to follow up.

McCann was being kept busy, finding himself with room to exploit, fed by the dynamic Nigel Quashie. But the final ball was missing.

Leicester threatened from two corners, Dion Dublin being denied twice - first by Niemi's fists and then by a scrambling Saints defence.

NcCann's protestations while waiting for the second corner earned him a yellow card.

Saints broke dangerously through Walcott but it came to nothing. With Leicester's back four hanging high up the pitch, Walcott was unable to time his runs and found himself well marshalled.

Meanwhile, Dennis Wise was being roundly booed by the home support on his return to the East Midlands club as he warmed up along the touchline.

On 40 minutes Walcott pushed down the right only for Rab Douglas to come flying out of his area and clatter into the 16-year-old. The keeper was lucky not to be red-carded, instead only being booked by referee Steve Tanner.

Walcott gingerly got to his feet and the resulting free-kick was headed over by Danny Higginbotham.

After the break Walcott used his pace to try to catch the Foxes sleeping, forcing a corner.

It came to nothing but, with Quashie controlling the midfield and Belmadi working the right flank, you felt it would only be a matter of time before Walcott found the space he needed.

He never did.

The ball continued to be swept from end to end but neither side could find a finish.

Svensson threatened the Foxes' goal as he put pressure on Rab Douglas, who came out to collect a long Rory Delap throw. The ball rebounded off Svensson and just wide, but he knew little about it.

The travelling 1,781 fans were then treated to the rare sight of Marian Pahars in action as he came on with 19 minutes remaining for McCann, who had struggled in the second half after a promising first.

But even the introduction of Pahars for only his third senior substitute appearance for Saints since April 2004 could not break the stalemate. Walcott drew one sharp save from Douglas from five yards out, to the agony of the adjacent Saints support.

And Saints survived a late Foxes rally, first from subsitiute Joe Hamill's header, then a long-range effort by Iain Hume and, in the dying seconds, Niemi denied Hume's glancing header to earn a point.

Saints now face a week-long international break and a goalless draw will ensure Redknapp keeps taking the headache tablets.

"These breaks are a nuisance," he said. "I don't think it does you any good. Nigel is away, Kenwyne is away, Claus, McCann ... so it's not an ideal situation."

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