Southampton survived the first-half dismissal of Yan Valery to reach the fourth round of the FA Cup with a 3-2 extra-time win at Swansea.
The Saints spent a full 90 minutes down to 10 men, but goals from Nathan Redmond, Mohamed Elyounoussi and Shane Long saw them progress from a tie played behind closed doors because of the Welsh Government’s coronavirus regulations.
Joel Piroe had brought parity after 77 minutes before Jan Bednarek’s own goal briefly put Swansea ahead in extra time.
The lack of a crowd did not favour Championship side Swansea, who were unable to unsettle slick Premier League opponents during a one-sided opening.
Valery’s second dismissal in English football offered Swansea encouragement, but Southampton – FA Cup semi-finalists last season – showed enormous character to fuel hopes of another productive run in the competition.
Swansea had not played since December 11 because of Covid-19 both in their squad and opposition camps.
There was little sign of rust as Liam Walsh, making a first home start since his summer arrival, fizzed a 20-yard shot just wide of the target.