Southampton v CHELSEA: Preview

Date: 27th February 2016
Venue: St Mary’s Stadium
Kick-off: 15:00 GMT

This afternoon’s game sees us travel to St Mary’s to take on a Southampton side at the top of the form table.
Whilst we’ve undoubtedly improved under Guus Hiddink, our unbeaten run in the Premier League, has all too often consisted of us playing it safe to get out of games with a draw. We’ve lacked the guts required to put games to bed and against a Southampton side who’ve dropped just 2 points in six games and haven’t conceded in any of them, that’s not going to cut it.
Interestingly though, the last time Forster conceded a goal was to Diego Costa in our 1-1 draw almost a year ago.

MANAGER’S VIEWS
Going into today’s game, Southampton manager Ronald Koeman says “Guus Hiddink showed me when I was a player in PSV in detail what you need to play on a high level. I always had a good understanding with him. I am looking forward to seeing him on Saturday.”
Chelsea interim manager Guus Hiddink meanwhile, says “After a little setback they [Southampton] have regained their confidence in recent games. They can maintain their clean sheet, but also they can play and surprise their opponent. They have a mix of young players but also players who know the game. That makes them very dangerous. It will be a very difficult game getting them out of their clean-sheet comfort zone. It’s up to us to try to annoy them.”

SQUAD NEWS
For Southampton, Florin Gardos and Jay Rodriguez both remain out following injuries and Victor Wanyama serves the second of a five game ban.
For Chelsea, Radamel Falcao remains injured and John Terry (hamstring) still isn’t ready for a return. Alexandre Pato meanwhile, must have been in particularly bad shape when he came to us because he’s apparently still not fit to play.

TEAMS
SOUTHAMPTON (Possible line-up): Forster; van Dijk, Fonte, Bertrand; Davis, Ward-Prowse, Clasie, Romeu, Targett; Long; Pellè
CHELSEA (Possible line-up): Courtois; Azpilicueta, Ivanovic, Cahill, Rahman, Matic, Fabregas; Pedro, Willian, Hazard, Costa

LAST SEASON
Southampton 1-1 Chelsea (28th December 2015)

CURRENT FORM
SOUTHAMPTON: WWWDWW
CHELSEA: DDWDDW

OTHER STUFF
~ Southampton are unbeaten in their last three league games with Chelsea
~ Southampton have lost just two of the last seven meetings with us
~ Chelsea have only lost one of their seven Premier League trips to St Mary’s
~ Southampton have won five of their last six league games, drawing the other.
~ Southampton have won their last four home games
~ Southampton haven’t conceded in the league in nine hours and 14 minutes
~ Chelsea are unbeaten in 10 league games
~ Guus Hiddink has lost just one of his 22 Premier League games in charge of Chelsea over two spells

PREDICTION
If I’m sticking to Hiddink’s ‘pattern’, we’re due a draw today – and it’s a pattern that’s stood the test since he arrived – so why do I have a feeling it won’t stand up to today’s trip?

Comments are closed.