On the back of their biggest win in the Premier League, Southampton look to continue their incredible start to the Premier League as they host Stoke City on Saturday with the two teams set to meet again on Wednesday night at the Britannia Stadium for their 4th round clash in the Capital One Cup.
The visitors also come into this match after a solid 2-1 win over Swansea which lifted them up in the top half of the table though this fixture that is yet to yield a win for either side in the Premier League. The 8-0 thrashing over Sunderland will no doubt buoy the Saints who will look to strengthen their position in the position in the Champions League spots with just a point separating them from 2nd place Manchester City.
Jay Rodriguez, Sam Gallagher and James Ward-Prowse will all sit out for Southampton on Saturday with Saido Mane in contention to start ahead of misfiring Shane Long after his substitute appearance against Sunderland last week.
For Stoke City, Peter Odemwingie is out for the season with an ACL injury and Robert Huth is a doubt with a calf injury.
Southampton: (4-3-3): Forster; Bertrand, Alderweireld, Fonte, Clyne; Schneiderlin, Davis, Cork; Tadic, Pelle, Mane
Stoke: (4-3-3): Begovic; Bardsley, Shawcross, Wilson, Pieters; N’Zonzi, Adam; Diouf, Ireland, Moses; Crouch
The last 4 meetings between the Southampton and Stoke City in the Premier League have resulted in score draws.
Southampton have conceded just once in their last 4 home games in the Premier League.
Southampton have conceded the fewest goals in the Premier League having let in just 5 goals in 8 games whilst scoring the 2nd highest with 19 with 13 of those coming in the 2nd half.
Stoke City have scored in each of their last 4 away games in the Premier League and have lost just 1 of those games, winning once and drawing the other 2.
Stoke City have conceded the 4th fewest goals in the Premier League with 9 goals in 8 games.
Last five meetings
08 Feb 2014 Southampton 2 – 2 Stoke City Premier League
02 Nov 2013 Stoke City 1 – 1 Southampton Premier League
19 May 2013 Southampton 1 – 1 Stoke City Premier League
29 Dec 2012 Stoke City 3 – 3 Southampton Premier League
12 Feb 2008 Stoke City 3 – 2 Southampton Championship
Southampton – Graziano Pelle
It’s hard to look past the burly Italian centre forward who has scored 3 goals in the past two games for club and country and is behind only Diego Costa and Sergio Aguero in the race for the Premier League’s top scorer with 6 goals in 8 games, joint with West Brom’s Saido Berahino.
With 4 shots and 4.3 aerial duels won on average per game, it is hard to look past the £9 million striker signed from Feyenoord who has excelled at the St Mary’s with another new signing Dusan Tadic with the two forming a formidable partnership and you can bet on the Serb to bag an assist to add to his tally of 7 in 8 games at @3.0 on Tailorbet.
Stoke City – Victor Moses
The Nigerian international will be the key to Stoke’s counter attacks as he would be the main outlet out wide with his dribbling skills which have seen him complete 3.2 take ons per game so far. The 23-year-old has averaged 2.2 key passes per game and has bagged 3 assists though Mark Hughes would want him to get into dangerous positions to shoot and improve on his 1.3 shots per game.
Though Moses won a penalty with a horrible dive against Swansea last weekend, he has it in his locker to produce some decent crosses on which Peter Crouch thrives on as was on display when the duo combined for the Englishman’s winner against Newcastle.
Southampton are on a fine run of 5 wins out of 6 in the league but Stoke are always a gritty customer and will be very hard to beat. Therefore continuing with the two sides tradition of drawing games, this might be another hard fought battle which ends up with the two sides sharing spoils in a score draw.