NEITHER Saints nor West Brom could find the illusive goal on Sunday as the first leg of the playoff semi-final ended 0-0.

The hosts spurned a succession of chances as they failed to make their pressure pay in the scorching heat. 

Alex McCarthy, who could be playing his final games for Southampton, produced two top saves to keep his side in the tie.

The draw means neither side will take an advantage into the second leg at St Mary's on Friday, May 17.

Here is how we rated every Southampton player’s performance at the Hawthorns…

Alex McCarthy - 7.

Produced an excellent save to deny West Brom an opening goal from close range, palming Grady Diangana's header off the line. 

Dealt well with crosses as the Baggies continually put Saints under pressure in the box. Pulled off a second stop to deny Diangana again in the second half.

Almost gifted West Brom a goal as Southampton struggled under pressure late on.

Kyle Walker-Peters - 6.

Struggled at times in the wide areas. Did not offer the same threat he usually does going forward. Kept calling for the ball but didn't always receive it. 

Taylor Harwood-Bellis - 6.

Looked to play over the top to Adam Armstrong, who looked to beat the Baggies' defensive line, but was caught offside. Was almost punished when his headed clearance fell to Alex Mowatt.

Jack Stephens - 5.

Good defensive intervention to cut out a cross from the left. Part of a defensive unit that got caught out on the ball a few times. Pulled out of a tackle which led to Diangana's shot.

Jan Bednarek - 6.

Played in the centre of a defence that kept a clean sheet despite being under constant pressure. Didn't stitch anyone up with a pass. Cleared a corner in injury time.

Ryan Manning - 6.

Caught out as West Brom looked to exploit the wide areas on the left and right. Delivered a few corners without creating a goal. Won all of the tackles he attempted. 

Flynn Downes - 7.

Good tackle on Brandon Thomas-Asante to win the ball after Saints conceded pressure while playing out. One-on-one saved by Alex Palmer but did really well to create the chance.

Will Smallbone - 6.

Kept his place after an impressive performance at Leeds. Lost the ball in midfield a few times but was trying to play forward. Part of why Southampton struggled to create chances. 

Joe Aribo - 6.

Good through ball to free Downes for his shot. Tracked back to stop a cross which would have found a WBA forward. Could have offered more creatively. 

Adam Armstrong - 5.

Fired into the side-netting on the rebound from Downes’ effort. Also caught offside on multiple occasions. Struggled for chances. Only managed 23 touches. 

Sekou Mara - 5.

Came in for the injured Che Adams, who was not risked due to suffering with a tight calf. Fired just over with a bicycle kick. Struggled to impose himself on the game. Had 17 touches. 


Ross Stewart - 6.

On for only his fourth Saints appearance - two of those have come against West Brom. Almost scored with his first shot - his deflected effort saved by Palmer's feet. Loads of movement. 

David Brooks - 6.

Struggled to adjust to the game after coming on. Could have been more neat in possession. Didn't make much of an impact.

Ryan Fraser - 6.

On in place of Manning and played at wing-back, giving him license to join the attack.