Lambert keeps Saints' hopes alive

Rickie Lambert scored a second-half hat-trick as Southampton kept their slim play-off hopes alive with a convincing 3-0 win at MK Dons.

Last Updated: 20/03/10 at 19:20 Post Comment

Lambert: Hat-trick hero

Lambert: Hat-trick hero

Lambert's treble took his season's goal tally to 30 and moved the Saints to within 14 points of the top six in League One.

Adam Lallana almost handed Alan Pardew's men the perfect start but his angled 10-yard strike was acrobatically headed off the line by Luke Chadwick, after keeper Willy Gueret had flapped at Jason Puncheon's cross.

The Dons seized control and Aaron Wilbraham headed Peter Leven's free-kick straight at Kelvin Davis before Dean Lewington somehow volleyed James Tunnicliffe's knock-back wide from six yards.

But Lambert made the hosts pay for their misses when he put the Saints ahead just three minutes after the break.

Davis launched a long free-kick into the box that Dons defender David McCracken could only head up into the air, and Lambert nipped in ahead of Gueret to head the ball into an empty net.

Jermaine Easter had a close-range overhead kick brilliantly saved by Davis and Mark Randall blasted a half-volley just wide as the Dons pressed for an equaliser.

But Lambert's powerful 69th-minute penalty doubled Southampton's lead after Jose Fonte had been tripped in the box by Mathias Doumbe.

Lambert sealed the win in fine style by lobbing Gueret from 35 yards with 14 minutes remaining.

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Position Team P GD PTS
1 Wolves 43 53 96
2 Brentford 43 30 90
3 Leyton Or 43 38 80
4 Rotherham 43 26 79
5 Preston 43 22 79
6 Peterboro 43 9 67
7 Swindon 43 6 63
8 Port Vale 43 -12 60
9 Sheff Utd 42 0 59
10 MK Dons 43 0 58
11 Walsall 43 2 57
12 Crawley 42 -4 55
13 Bradford 43 2 53
14 Bristol C 43 1 53
15 Gillingham 43 -17 51
16 Oldham 42 -10 50
17 Coventry 43 -2 49
18 Colchester 43 -12 46
19 Tranmere 43 -24 46
20 Crewe 43 -27 46
21 Carlisle 42 -26 44
22 Notts Co 43 -16 43
23 Shrewsbury 43 -16 41
24 Stevenage 43 -23 39

Updated Sat, 19 Apr 2014

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