SECOND-HALF goals from Patrick Bamford, Stuart Dallas and Raphinha ensured Saints slipped to a seventh defeat in eight Premier League games.

Bamford recorded his 13th league goal of the season before Dallas’s classy finish and Raphinha’s free-kick ensured Ralph Hasenhuttl’s men slipped to a 3-0 defeat at Leeds United.

The setback left Saints 14th in the Premier League, with 30 points from 25 games played.

Saints made three changes from the starting XI which helped seal a 1-1 home draw with Chelsea last time out.

Ralph Hasenhuttl brought in Stuart Armstrong, Che Adams and Nathan Tella from the off – youngster Tella making his first Premier League start.

Danny Ings, Takumi Minamino and Moussa Djenepo dropped to the bench.

Leeds went into the contest having lost their past two league fixtures and it was Saints who almost had the opener after just six minutes.

A menacing free-kick teased in by James Ward-Prowse found the head of Jannik Vestergaard. Having escaped his marker, the towering Dane glanced an effort just wide of the far post. Tella then fired the first attempt on goal two minutes later.

After possession was won by Oriol Romeu in midfield, the former Arsenal youngster skipped away from the challenge of centre-back Liam Cooper before firing straight at keeper Illan Meslier.

But Saints escaped a let-off themselves midway through the opening half. After Adams was dispossessed, Raphinha was allowed to surge into the visitors’ box.

After evading a sliding challenge from Mohammed Salisu, he pulled the ball back for Tyler Roberts, who failed to keep down his powerful first-time strike.

Leeds then created another opening. Raphinha’s free-kick found the unmarked Diego Llorente inside the area – his header across goal was stabbed over by skipper Cooper, under pressure from Salisu.

A flashpoint in the contest then came just after the half-hour mark. Tella ran at Leeds defender Llorente and went down in the box, with referee Andre Marriner pointing to the spot.

But following a VAR check from Kevin Friend, official Marriner was called to consult the pitch-side monitor and overturned the decision.

It was in the other area that Saints then survived by the skin of their teeth.

After Raphinha ran in on goal after being released on a Leeds counter, Romeu came out of nowhere tracking back to slide in and take the ball off him – a challenge the Spaniard had to get right.

Saints then had the ball in the net when a Ward-Prowse free-kick was played in for Adams to finish – referee Marriner said he had not blown his whistle.

Another Ward-Prowse delivery had Meslier scrambling, as he palmed away a corner which was swinging into the top corner just before the break.

But it was Leeds who opened the scoring within two minutes of the second half.

Having been kept fairly quiet in the opening period, Bamford drifted inbetween two defenders to latch onto Roberts’s through ball.

And the former Chelsea youngster showed real composure to apply a cool finish into the far corner of the net.

Saints then looked to rally through Scot Armstrong. After winning the ball high up the pitch – the midfielder worked a diving Meslier at his near post.

Leeds threw men forward in search of a second. Bamford found space inside the box to fire at goal, only to be denied by Alex McCarthy.

Hasenhuttl then looked to the bench and brought on Ings and Minamino in place of Tella and Nathan Redmond but it was McCarthy who came to the rescue again.

He managed to keep out Llorente from point-blank range after Raphinha had drilled the ball into a dangerous area.

Bamford then kept Saints out at the other end. Ward-Prowse delivered a corner onto the head of Vestergaard, who saw his attempt cleared over the bar by the striker.

Saints suffered an injury blow when Romeu was forced to hobble off 20 minutes from time – the midfielder’s ankle appeared to get stuck in the turf. He was replaced by Djenepo.

But the game was virtually all over as a contest as Leeds added a second on 76 minutes.

Dallas slotted the ball into the bottom corner with the outside of his boot to give Bielsa’s charges clear daylight on their south coast opposition.

And after a foul Djenepo, Raphinha capped his night by sending a free-kick past McCarthy six minutes from time.

Leeds: Meslier, Ayling, Llorente, Cooper, Dallas, Raphinha, Struijk, Klich (Alioski, 59), Harrison (Costa, h-t), Roberts (Hernandez, 74), Bamford.

Unused subs: Gelhardt, Cresswell, Jenkins, Casey, Huggins, Casilla (g/k).

Booked: None.

Saints: McCarthy; Bednarek, Vestergaard, Salisu, Bertrand; Ward-Prowse, Romeu (Djenepo, 75), Tella (Minamino, 58), Armstrong; Redmond (Ings, 58), Adams.

Unused subs: Stephens, Ramsay, M'Lundulu, Jankewitz, Chauke, Forster (g/k).

Booked: Vestergaard, Djenepo.

Referee: Andre Marriner.

VAR: Kevin Friend.