Southampton vs Norwich City Preview | Team News, Key Men and Stats

Southampton vs Norwich City Preview | Team News, Key Men and Stats

Southampton host Norwich City under difficult circumstances on Sunday, 30th August. A host of injuries coupled with another summer of losing crucial players has left this side restructuring itself. With the likes of Swansea, Leicester, Manchester United, Chelsea and Liverpool to come, manager Ronald Koeman will be keen to build on his points tally in the next two games. On the other hand, Norwich, who many believe will be scraping for survival come the end of the season, have begun life on a positive note. With confidence running high in the squad, we could see Norwich put out yet another impressive performance over the weekend.

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Team News

Southampton

Last season’s star performer Forster (Knee) is expected to remain out for most of this season. He is accompanied on the treatment table by Ryan Bertrand (Knee) Gardos (Knee) and Clasie (Hamstring). While Uruguayan Gaston Ramirez is expected to be back from a knock, we don’t expect him to feature in the side. However, there is some good news as midfield dynamo Victor Wanyama and influential  winger Saido Mane are expected to make the starting line up on the weekend, strengthening the side many fold.

Norwich

The biggest drama surrounding the club at the moment is the situation of striker Lewis Grabban. The striker is expected to miss the game after Norwich decided to discipline him for trying to force a move away from the Carrow Road. On the injuries front, we expect Mulumbu (Metatarsal) and Olsson (Shoulder) to miss the games while Lafferty, despite being deemed surplus to requirements could travel to St. Mary’s.

Interesting Facts

  • This will be the 97th meeting between these sides in all competitions.
  • Of the 96 games played between these two sides, Southampton have won 36 while Norwich have won 31 games. At Southampton, the Saints have won 26 of the 49 games played.
  • The last time Norwich won at Southampton was in the 2006-07 Championship season.

Possible Line-Up

Southampton

Stekelenberg, Yoshida, Fonte, Caulker, Romeu, Targett, Davis, Wanyama, Soares, Mane, Pelle

Norwich

Ruddy, Whittaker, Martin, Bassong, Brady, Redmond, Dorrans, Tettery, Howson, Hoolahan, Jerome

Key Men

Victor Wanyama      

The Kenyan was formidable in the Southampton side of the previous years, plying his trade along one of the best midfielders in the league in Morgan Schneiderlin. While his own abilities are not under the scanner, he will be under immense scrutiny this season with critics ready to waive off his reputation as one of the top midfielders in the league. With a solid passing ability coupled with a strong reputation as a destroyer, Wanyama is one of the most crucial part of this Southampton side and he will need to shut out Norwich from playing their free flowing football.

Nathan Redmond     

Nathan Redmond, at just 21 years of age is being touted as the man to keep Norwich in the league come the end of the season. The attacking midfielder scored six goals and provided 12 assists last season, making him a crucial talking point in every team’s tactics talk. He has created 8 chances so far this season with one of them resulting in an assist. That statistic is complemented well by the two goals he has scored in three games so far. The Englishman has good close control, speed and a vision often not found in players his age to trouble the opposition. Southampton had one of the cleanest defensive records last season, which they haven’t emulated so far. With a player like Redmond in their fold, we don’t expect Norwich to offer the Saints any respite.

Tips

Prediction

Southampton will be looking to make amends for a terrible first few opening games this season. But Norwich seem hungrier and better functioning as a unit. We expect Ronald Koeman to set up a team that digs its feet deep to chalk out a 1-0 win.