Southampton recovered from the disappointment of their midweek Europa League elimination to return to winning ways in the Premier League, beating Middlesbrough 1-0 at St Mary's.
The winner came in the 53rd minute when Sofiane Boufal picked up the ball from James Ward-Prowse and unleashed an unstoppable left-foot shot into the net for his first league goal.
It was the one high point of a drab match which did much to explain why both teams average less than a goal a game this season.
Neither side threatened in an uneventful first half noteworthy only for the booking of Dusan Tadic.
Southampton looked more potent after the interval, when the Serbian was surprisingly replaced by Nathan Redmond, and would have secured a more comfortable win had Jay Rodriguez not blasted over the bar late on.
Ireland striker Shane Long came on as a substitute for the last five minutes.