Honours even in this mid-table clash in south Wales.
Swansea City and Southampton, both now safe from the Premier League drop, fought out a disappointing goalless draw in south Wales on Saturday afternoon.
The point left Michael Laudrup’s side in ninth place in the table and with 12th-place Southampton also apparently assured of survival, the game at the Liberty Stadium merely emphasised that both sides have already achieved their objectives for the season.
There was an early piece of good news for the home side, who were able to include Wales international left-back Neil Taylor on the substitutes’ bench for the first time since he broke his ankle in September.
Swansea manager Laudrup drafted Angel Rangel, Leon Britton and Pablo Hernandez into his starting XI, while Jay Rodriguez came in for Gaston Ramirez in the only alteration to the visitors’ team.
Typically, the hosts dominated possession from kick-off, but Southampton midfielder Jack Cork was the first player to seriously threaten with a shot from distance that called Swansea goalkeeper Michel Vorm into action for the first time.
The Dutchman also had to save a low effort from Rodriguez, before a trademark free-kick from Southampton striker Rickie Lambert obliged Vorm to fling himself into an eye-catching parry.
Adam Lallana thought he had broken the deadlock from the ensuing corner, but he was penalised for his challenge on Vorm and the goal was not given.
The hosts made a positive start to the second half and might have taken the lead had Michu been able to find the target with a header from a Wayne Routledge cross.
Nathan Dyer then scuffed a shot wide as Swansea continued to up the ante, before Michu flicked a header wide from Jonathan de Guzman’s corner.
As the game entered its final quarter, Dyer came within a whisker of scoring when he met Michu’s lay-off with a crisp drive that beat Southampton goalkeeper Artur Boruc but was blocked by defender Maya Yoshida.
The home side continued to press and Boruc produced a fine save to repel De Guzman after charging off his line.
For all Swansea’s pressure, Southampton came close to nicking victory at the death, but when Steven Davis found Zambian substitute Emmanuel Mayuka with a square pass, Vorm intervened in timely fashion to save with his legs.