Jay Rodriguez stars for Southampton in win at Bournemouth

Jay Rodriguez’s brace fired Southampton to their first away victory in the Premier League since September in a convincing 3-1 win at Bournemouth.

The 27-year-old’s fine double backed up a smart Ryan Bertrand strike as Saints rallied from Nathan Ake’s opener to steal the south coast bragging rights.

Rodriguez rejected a loan move when boss Claude Puel joined Saints in the summer, and finally looks to be over the serious knee and foot injuries that have dogged his last two years.

A first league win on the road in six matches had Saints manager Puel feeling vindicated for leaving Jose Fonte on the bench.

Unsettled Portugal defender Fonte was seen deep in animated conversation with Saints manager Puel on the Dean Court turf shortly before the teams were announced.

Fonte has previously voiced his displeasure with Puel’s rotation policy that has denied the 32-year-old any Europa League action – and also kept him out of the fray at Dean Court.

Saints’ refusal to extend Euro 2016 winner Fonte’s contract beyond its remaining 18 months has put a host of suitors on alert ahead of the January transfer window.

Apparent public disagreements like the pre-match discussions between Fonte and Puel here will only further stoke the fires around a mid-season transfer for the highly-regarded centre back.

Southampton’s win will doubtless have left the club’s French manager confident he made the right call in sticking to his rotation guns.

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