Southampton vs Chelsea Preview | Team News, Stats & Key Men

Southampton vs Chelsea Preview | Team News, Stats & Key Men

Two in-form teams meet when Southampton host Chelsea on Saturday. Interestingly, both the teams didn’t look as threatening sometime back. Southampton had a spell where they just had one win and eight defeats in 10 matches in all competitions. Last season’s champions Chelsea were in horrible form, something that saw talismanic boss Jose Mourinho get the sack. Guus Hiddink has significantly improved the Chelsea side since taking over from Mourinho but the Blues go into this match amidst rumors claiming Antonio Conte will take over in the summer.

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Both the teams have recently been in great form and could both benefit greatly from a win. Southampton will move above Manchester United in the table if they manage to defeat the Blues while Chelsea will move into the top half of the table for the first time since August if they manage three points at St. Mary’s.

Team News

Southampton

Having collected his third red card of the campaign against West Ham, Victor Wanyama will miss this tie. Florin Gardos and Jay Rodriguez are both nearing fitness after suffering from long-term injuries, but will not be fit in time to feature against Chelsea this weekend.

Chelsea 

Captain John Terry will undergo a late fitness test to assess whether he will be face Saints as he makes his return from the hamstring injury that has kept him out for the past two games. The Blues have been dealt a major blow with Kurt Zouma suffering with an ACL injury that is going to keep him out for the remainder of the season. Winter signing Alexandre Pato is still working his way up to match fitness.

Interesting Stats

  • The Saints have picked up 16 points from the last 18 on offer, the best tally in the Premier League.
  • Chelsea have lost just one of their last seven Premier League trips to St Mary’s, winning four of those.
  • Southampton have only won two of their last 14 meetings with Chelsea, although they are unbeaten in their last three.
  • Southampton have failed to keep a clean sheet in their last 11 Premier League games against Chelsea.

Key Men

Fraser Forster

The turnaround in form for Southampton and Forster’s return to the first team (from injury) can’t be a coincidence with the England goalkeeper still not having conceded a single goal in his six outings this season. The Southampton goalkeeper will equal a club record this weekend if he manages to keep a clean sheet. Forster is in absolutely incredible touch and his performance against Arsenal recently was one of the best by a goalkeeper this season. With Chelsea doing extremely well offensively recently, Forster will have to have a top game for the hosts to pick up points from the game.

Diego Costa

The Spaniard has been in prolific touch in front of goal. He has scored seven times in the last eight Premier League ties. He has really found his feet again interim boss under Guus Hiddink and is an incredibly vital reason for the Blues’ recent resurgence.