By FOX Sports staff
It took the Saints just six minutes to take the lead at St Mary's when Morgan Schneiderlin beat Brad Jones with a deft finish from close range, before Rickie Lambert weighed in with a second three minutes after the half-hour mark with a deflected freekick.
Liverpool did manage to pull one back on the stroke of halftime when Philippe Coutinho pounced on the rebound to score, but the hosts stayed firm for much of the second half, and went on to wrap up all three points ten minutes from time when Jay Rodriguez scored with a fine individual effort.
Here, FOX Sports rates the movers and shakers from Saturday's clash.
Artur Boruc - 7.5
Having been hailed by his manager Mauricio Pochettino in his last outing, Boruc was under less stress on Saturday but still had to make a couple of good saves, especially in the first half when he denied Coutinho in a one-on-one situation.
Nathaniel Clyne - 7
Clyne continued his good recent run of form with another excellent display despite coming up against a very lively Coutinho, and even found time to push forward in attack on a number of occasions.
Jos Hooiveld (off 32') - 6.5
The one minor blemish on an otherwise excellent afternoon for the Saints was an injury to Hooiveld shortly after the half-hour mark.
Up till that point, the experienced centre-back had been having a decent outing although thankfully for his side, Jose Fonte was a more-than-capable replacement.
Maya Yoshida - 7.5
Yoshida showed why he is now a regular in Pochettino's starting XI as he was impassable at the back.
The Japan international rarely gave Daniel Sturridge time and space on the ball, and also read the game to perfection, making a vital interception towards the end of the first half to deny Liverpool a clear-cut opening.
Luke Shaw - 8
Labelled as the "new Gareth Bale" in some quarters, Shaw is undoubtedly one of the brightest prospects in the English game at the moment.
Unlike Bale, the 17-year-old is actually an excellent defender but is also equally capable of being an attacking threat, as he showed with his many forays forward on Saturday.
Morgan Schneiderlin - 7
More known as a defensive midfielder, the ex-Middlesbrough man has added a new string to his bow this season as he's emerged as a legitimate threat up front, and weighed in with another goal after just six minutes when his deft flick flew past Jones and into the bottom corner.
Considering the Reds looked lacklustre for most of the afternoon, Schneiderlin had little defending to do and it was a very comfortable outing for the Frenchman.
Adam Lallana (off 84') - 7.5
The Saints captain was at his all-action best once again and the opposition midfielders found it almost impossible to contain him.
Gaston Ramirez (off 55') - 7
Although he struggled to regularly influence proceedings, on the few occasions he did get involved, Ramirez posed a real threat to Liverpool and played some exquisite passes to put his side on the front foot.
Given how dangerous he was looking, it was somewhat surprising that he was replaced ten minutes into the second half.
Jack Cork - 6
Cork was one of the few Southampton players that failed to shine and he never really came to terms with the pace of the game, and spent most of his time chasing shadows.
Jay Rodriguez - 8.5
One of the stars of the show for Southampton was Rodriguez, who played a key role in their early opener as he nodded a neat ball back for Schneiderlin to turn home.
The 23-year-old continued to be a thorn in Liverpool's flesh and rounded things off in the 80th minute when he went on a penetrating run and fired away a shot that was saved by Jones, although he was alert enough to tap home on the rebound.
Rickie Lambert - 7.5
Lambert has turned out to be one of the revelations of the season but unlike his usual strikes, he got on the board on Saturday with a ferocious freekick that took a wicked deflection of Sturridge and sailed past Jones.
Credit has to go to the Saints striker though for having the audacity to fire straight at the wall, expecting gaps to appear as the Liverpool players jumped.
Jose Fonte (on 32') - 7
The early injury to Hooiveld was hardly felt by Pochettino's side as Fonte stepped in and put in a errorless display.
Steven Davis (on 55') - 6.5
Davis came in for Ramirez five minutes before the hour mark and did well to provide more stability in the Southampton engine room as they looked to play out the game.
Guilherme Do Prado (on 84') - N/A
Do Prado came on late in the game with the win all but sewn up.
Brad Jones - 7
While he ended up conceding three, Jones had a decent outing and made a couple of smart saves.
Had the Australian not been between the sticks, Liverpool might very well have found themselves on the receiving end of a hefty defeat.
Glen Johnson - 5.5
Although now an established England international, the jury is still out on Johnson as he was severely exposed by the Saints.
Caught out of position on several occasions, the 28-year-old was also extremely untidy with his passing and regularly gave the ball straight back to the opponents in dangerous positions.
Martin Skrtel - 6
Skrtel has spent most of his career bullying opponents into submission, but he more than met his match on Saturday as Lambert gave him a torrid time.
The Slovakia international had to resort to fouling the opposition striker in order to prevent him from getting into dangerous positions, and will be disappointed with his display.
Daniel Agger - 6.5
Agger fared a little better than his centre-back partner in terms of dealing with Lambert, but there was a severe lack in communication among the back four. Where is Jamie Carragher when you need him?
Jose Enrique - 6.5
The Spaniard had a glorious opportunity to get Liverpool back in the game from a corner but he totally missed the ball. Still, he was the only defender in red to who defended properly and could leave the pitch with his head held high.
Joe Allen (off 46') - 3
The Welshman was physically incompetent in midfield as he was easily bullied off the ball, which is not a criticism you can direct at him all the time. Blame it on the shoulder, Joe.
Steven Gerrard - 7
His passes and shots on goal may have been a tad off, but nobody can question his work rate. Despite turning 33 in May, "Stevie G" is still Liverpool's driving force and the Reds could have suffered a much heavier defeat if not for his fearless tackles all over the pitch.
Stewart Downing - 5
Downing was clueless on how to beat the young Shaw which meant that the forays down the Liverpool right wing were non-existent.
To make matters worse, he failed to track the runs of his direct opponent on numerous occasions, leaving Johnson horribly exposed.
Luis Suarez - 6
This is definitely not the Suarez we are so accustomed to watching. It didn't help that the entire team looked void of confidence but he lacked the trickery, and hunger to even create something for himself.
Southampton's centre-back pair didn't have to break a sweat in this game.
Philippe Coutinho - 6.5
He was virtually a spectator in the game till he scored just before the break. He then picked up where he left off in the second half, largely anonymous and didn't look like he could come up with anything special.
Daniel Sturridge (off 84') - 5.5
There are days when you can be forgiven for being selfish but not when your team are chasing a two goal deficit. Sturridge had to endure a frustrating 84 minutes of poor touches and bad decisions before his manager finally replaced him.
He was also the culprit for that gaping hole which led to Lambert's goal from a free-kick.
Lucas (on 46') - 6
Brendan Rogers was forced to make this substitution after the restart and although it was not a much improved switch, he added more muscle to the Reds midfield. This brings us to one of the most fundamental questions in football - why would you start someone who is not 100% fit?
Jordan Henderson (on 84') - N/A
Henderson was brought on with the game all but lost and had little time to make impact.