SAINTS missed a great opportunity to leave White Hart Lane with some points in the bag.

It’s not often Ralph Hasenhuttl’s side will be able to lament a defeat against one of the Premier League’s best sides, but Saturday was certainly one of those days.

Although Tottenham took the lead early on through Tangay Ndombele, the St Mary’s outfit were gifted a chance of turning the game around and leaving London with a win.

Defender Serge Aurier had a manic four minutes which saw him booked twice, resulting in a sending off.

The first caution came after he clattered into Sofiane Boufal, which he then followed up with a needless foul on Ryan Bertrand.

This should have allowed Saints time to regroup and begin taking advantage of the extra man.

Having one player extra on the pitch eventually paid off for the visitors when Danny Ings forced Hugo Lloris to make a shocking blunder at the back.

However, as has been the case with Saints over recent seasons, they proceeded to squander their lead by conceding a goal just minutes later.

Mauricio Pochettino’s side managed a quick counter on the verge of half time which resulted in Harry Kane finding the bottom corner.

And if Saints have ambitions to finish higher up the table this season, then it’s exactly these types of errors that they need to stamp out.

Had they also held their nerve and gone on to win the match at White Hart Lane, it would’ve meant Sunday’s home tie with Chelsea could be a free hit.

Instead, they will now head into that match knowing that a defeat will leave them lingering above the relegation, if not in it, for the international break.

Given that they are yet to win at St Mary’s since the start of the Premier League campaign it will be a tall order to do that when Frank Lampard’s Blues come to town.

That’s why it’s crucial Saints take advantage of opportunities that come their way as one did at White Hart Lane.

There is no doubt that Hasenhuttl's team will beat a portion of the sides around them in the table, but it will be shock results against the big-six that will add the extra sparkle to a season and see them move away from the relegation zone and nearer the top half of the table.