The Championship's top two sides played out a heated 1-1 draw at Upton Park this evening.
West Ham had to play a large part of the game with ten men after Matt Taylor was dismissed early on in a penalty incident, but Southampton couldn't make the extra man count over the 90 minutes.
The home side made the brighter start and new signing Ricardo Vaz Te, making his full debut in a Claret shirt, forced Kelvin Davis into a smart save after just 47 seconds.
Winston Reid should have given the Hammers the lead after eight minutes but fired over when presented with a simple put-away but they were soon ahead after an incident in the penalty area.
Mark Noble was first brought down in the area before Taylor was shown red for the hosts after a ruckus broke out in the aftermath following Lee Probert's decision.
Noble eventually stepped up and converted the spot kick to put the Hammers ahead, although they would have to play the remaining 70 minutes with ten men.
As the half moved to a close, Southampton began to get into the game, with top scorer Ricky Lambert the Saints' main threat. The forward sent a free kick just wide of Robert Green's post three minutes before the break.
After the interval Lambert continued to look the most dangerous in a red-and-white shirt as the visitors pushed for an equaliser.
West Ham responded by bringing on forward Nicky Maynard for his debut but the Saints were soon level when centre-back Jos Hooiveld reacted quickest to Lambert's knockdown to poke under Green.
Both sides resume their positions at one and two in the table, with Cardiff City closing to within three points of second-placed Southampton.
Feb 14, 2012 at 7.45pm UK at Upton Park
Result: West Ham United 1-1 Southampton
© PA Photos
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