His day might have ended in disappointment, but Fraser Forster still wrote himself into the Saints record books against Chelsea on Saturday.
The keeper passed Paul Jones’s top-flight record for the longest run of time without conceding a goal, reaching 708 minutes – or just shy of 12 hours – before being beaten by Cesc Fàbregas.
Jones had held the honour since 2001, when he went 666 minutes in the Premier League without allowing a goal, including a run of seven consecutive clean sheets.
Forster surpassed that mark after 34 minutes of the clash with Chelsea, and there was a lovely touch from the Saints fans at that point as they burst into a spontaneous round of applause for the 27-year-old.
Coincidentally, Forster’s run actually both began and ended against Chelsea.
Before Fàbregas found a way past him in the 75th minute at St Mary’s, the last time he had conceded was to a Diego Costa header in the 11th minute of a 1-1 draw against the Blues, at Stamford Bridge, in March last year.
Forster would suffer a serious knee injury in the early stages of his next match, a 2-0 home win against Burnley, keeping him out of action for ten months.
He returned in sensational fashion during January of this year, rattling off six consecutive clean sheets on his return, making 17 saves in that span.
Ten of those stops came in his incredible performance in a 0-0 draw at Arsenal earlier this month, as he produced a string of jaw-dropping stops.
In total during his entire run, Forster made 23 saves before being beaten.
Unfortunately, his record-breaking day was somewhat overshadowed by late goals from Fàbregas and then Branislav Ivanović, as Chelsea came from behind to win 2-1 at St Mary’s.
That stopped Saints’ run of clean sheets at six games – one behind the 2001 top-flight record, and two shy of the club’s all-time best, set across the last seven games of the 1921/22 Division Three (South) season and the first match of the 1922/23 Division Two campaign.