MATCH of the Day pundit Danny Murphy labelled Mohammed Salisu’s man of the match performance against Manchester City as the “best” he had seen Salisu play for Saints.

The Ghanian centre-half led Saints for clearances, interceptions, tackles and passes, with the defender a huge part of Saints’ ability to keep a recently rampant City side at bay.

Fellow BBC pundit Garth Crooks omitted Salisu from his team of the week despite the universal praise he had received for his performance, instead deciding to single out the Saints player for his “utterly reckless” style.

Murphy could not disagree more with his colleague, signing Salisu’s praises on live TV.

Speaking on Match of the Day, Murphy said: "It was a phenomenal performance.

“He [Salisu] has had his critics in certain games this season and he can be erratic, but it was a perfect performance.

"He was helped by everyone around him playing well also, but it was a mixture of his aerial ability, his reading of the game, his blocks, patience, his passing when he came out was good.

"He was full of confidence – it looks like he loves defending, he loves the challenge, and everything went well for him.”

Whilst Murphy did focus on Salisu, he also credited the entire Saints team for their effort to and commitment to the game plan.

"[Jan] Bednarek next to him as well, he had to play well,” continued the former Liverpool and Fulham midfielder.

“The other thing as well in this system when you play 4-2-2-2 is your two central midfielders have to help you a lot and screen, and [James] Ward-Prowse and [Oriol] Romeu do that so, so well.

"The two wide midfield boys have got a tireless job in helping their full-backs and trying to get forward as well.

"He deserves all the credit he gets and it was the best I have seen him play for Southampton, and I’ve done a lot of their games.

"He didn't stop, even in the last minute, he stayed on his feet, didn't jump in and he wasn't erratic at all.

“Any one of them could have been man of the match, but we (Murphy and Alan Shearer) were watching it and we were saying, it’s Salisu again, it’s Salisu again, it was like a magnet to him."