Tag Archives: Southampton

Southampton vs Manchester United – Confirmed Lineups

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A clash between fourth and fifth placed teams and the winner will move into third place as the fight to secure top four intensifies. Thanks to Stoke’s impressive win over Arsenal, the winner of this game could open up a significant gap over the struggling Gunners.

For the travelling side, captain Wayne Rooney returns from his knee injury and Falcao finds himself on the bench. It is no surprise that LVG has gone for a strong lineup to face the Saints, who have always proved to be a tricky opponent. On the other hand, his Dutch compatriot Ronald Koeman has few injury concerns to ponder about as the likes of jack cork, Toby Alderweireld and Morgan Schneiderlin misses out.

Here are the confirmed lineups:

Southampton: Forster, Clyne, Fonte (c), Yoshida, Bertrand, Wanyama, S. Davis, Tadić, Mané, Long, Pellè.

Subs: K. Davis (GK), Gardos, Mayuka, Isgrove, Reed, Targett, Hesketh.

Manchester United: De Gea, McNair, Smalling, Rojo, Valencia, Carrick, Fellaini, Young, Mata, Rooney, van Persie

Subs: Lindegaard, Evans, Herrera, Fletcher, Januzaj, Wilson, Falcao

We are rooting for the away side to collect all three points. What do you think would be the result?




Southampton vs Manchester United – Team News, Lineups, Match Facts, Preview & Prediction

louis van gaal

Manchester United and Southampton are both fighting for the same place among the top-4 in the Premier League, fancying their chances because they are doing well as compared to their rivals. Southampton have 26 points from 14 matches, while United have 25 from 14 so far. On current form, Manchester United hold the advantage, as they have had gritty wins in their past few fixtures, which was initiated by the draw against Chelsea, as that served United a reminder that they could go toe-to-toe with the best clubs and beat them. On the other hand, Southampton are going through a slump after an electrifying start to their campaign in which they amassed 25 points in 11 games, before drawing Aston Villa and losing to the big daddies in the Premier League, Manchester City and Arsenal.

Southampton were thought to be the underdogs at the beginning of the season, as they had cashed in on their successful players after a unexpectedly brilliant campaign last season, and had brought in a new manager, Ronald Koeman, who brought a set of fresh faces at bargain prices, into the Premier League to at least replicate, if not to do better than the last campaign, which drew flak from the fans, who were dismayed to see the club cashing in on the players who had made them successful.

The fans are all behind Ronald Koeman now, as the club has gone from strength to strength, and are looking better than last season. Their ex-manager, Mauricio Pochettino is not doing as well as Koeman at Tottenham, and the players they have sold off will need time to develop into the players they could be, after their moves to bigger clubs. The fact that this has worked out better for Southampton than expected, is a once in a lifetime escape, and Southampton cannot afford to change themselves into a selling club to try and keep themselves out of the red, again and again.

Manchester United, on the other hand, brought in Louis van Gaal, to try and turn their fortunes around, after an underwhelming season under David Moyes the last time around. The purse strings have been loosened, as Louis van Gaal has blown through ridiculous amounts to bring established, experienced players to the club, who have made an immediate impact. The club has gone through a torrid injury crisis, which has just started to show signs of relenting, as United have been forced to think beyond their star players and put faith in their youth, who have been thrown in at the deep end, punched above their weight and have shown that they are more than capable of playing for United at the top-level, shutting criticism that the extravagant spending by United would hamper their home-grown talent. The fans were looking forward to seeing their club getting back into European competition by the end of the season, and their wish seems likely to be fulfilled, though it may be a struggle for them to stay within UEFA Financial Fair Play rules.

The transfer of Luke Shaw, the ongoing feud between compatriot managers, Ronald Koeman and Louis van Gaal since their time at Ajax ten years ago, and the yawning gap in their spending to reach the top are bones of contention between the two clubs that could spice up the battle further. Both managers will want to go for a win and not have the other have the satisfaction of beating him. This Monday night game should be a real firecracker, if it lives up to its expectations.

Southampton vs Manchester United Team News:

The home side will be without Jack Cork, who is out with an ankle problem, while Morgan Schneiderlin is a mojor doubt with a groin injury, which kept him out of action against Arsenal. Koeman will also be missing the impressive James Ward-Prowse  for this one.

Van gaal on the other hand will be more than happy to welcome Wayne Rooney back from his ankle injury. Di maria is still absent.

Southampton vs Manchester United Match Facts:

  • Southampton have scored the first goal in four of their last five PL meetings with Manchester United but lost three and won none of those four matches.
  • Rooney has scored five goals in five Premier League starts against Southampton.
  • United have won nine and lost just one of the last 12 Premier League games against Saints.
  • Saints have started the fewest spread of players this season in the Premier League (15), while Man United have handed starts to more than any other team (26).
  • Just six of Manchester United’s 25 points so far this season have been claimed away from Old Trafford (W1 D3 L2).
  • Nathaniel Clyne has made more tackles than any other Premier League player this season (63).

Facts compiled from Sky Sports.

Southampton vs Manchester United Possible Lineups:

Southampton (4-3-3): Fraser Forster – Nathaniel Clyne, Jose Fonte, Toby Alderweireld, Ryan Bertrand – Steven Davis, Harrison Reed, Victor Wanyama – Sadio Mane, Graziano Pelle, Dusan Tadic.

Manchester United (4-4-2 diamond): David de Gea – Antonio Valencia, Chris Smalling, Jonny Evans, Marcos Rojo – Michael Carrick, Angel di Maria, Ander Herrera, Juan Mata – Wayne Rooney, Robin van Persie.

Southampton vs Manchester United Prediction: 

A 1-2 win for the away side.


Arsenal vs Southampton – Confirmed Lineups

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Here Are The Confirmed Lineups:

Arsenal:  Martinez, Chambers, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Monreal, Flamini, Ramsey, Cazorla, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Alexis, Welbeck

Subs: Macey, Gibbs, Bellerin, Rosicky, Podolski, Sanogo, Giroud

Southampton:  Forster, Clyne, Fonte, Alderweireld, Bertrand, Wanyama, Cork, S. Davis, Tadić, Long, Pellè.

Subs: K. Davis , Yoshida, Gardos, Mané, Mayuka, Reed, Targett.

Three crucial points on offer for both the teams. A win would keep Arsenal, close to Manchester United in the race for the fourth place, while Saints will be looking to gain as many points as they can in the hope to finish in an European place.

Despite facing an injury scare, Chamberlain is fit to start as Wenger opts to move Giroud to the bench. Flamini takes the holding role in the absence of Arteta, while Sanchez and Cazorla will look to create goals in front of him.

For the Saints, Schneiderlin will be a huge miss and the likes of Wanyama and Cork will have to be on their toes for this one.

Arsenal vs Southampton – Team News, Lineups, Match Facts, Preview & Prediction


Arsenal looked better than they have in recent times, in their weekend win over West Brom. They have been leaking goals in recent times, in winning situations, and the clean sheet against the Baggies would have give a dwindling confidence for the Gunners. The win also let Wenger breathe, as fans have taken to asking for his resignation, over the team’s unimpressive and drab play. Southampton, their high-flying opponents, have been knocked off their perch, as they slumped to a 0-3 loss at home, after having been placed second on the table after 13 matches, as the gulf in quality between their side and Manchester City, the previous title-holders was seen. Southampton will be in the top-10 by the end of the season, but they may struggle in their upcoming set of fixtures, as they will face the top teams now.

For Arsenal, the return of Olivier Giroud is a blessing in disguise, especially since the Welbeck effect was tapering off, and they would need his powerful presence upfront to hold the ball up and pass it to the pacier players. Per Mertesacker and Laurent Koscielny are playing together again, most importantly, and the gulf in the class of these top-class defenders playing together versus a makeshift defence that had been formed in recent weeks to cope with injuries to one of the two, was seen, as Arsenal kept a clean sheet. Through a hectic December, Arsenal seem to be picking up steam, and should be able to contend for a top-4 slot once they strengthen the team with a centre-back/defensive midfielder in January. The only hindrance that could trouble Arsenal now is their set of attacking midfielders, who seemed too many for the club in comparison to their defenders, but most of them are injured now, which could hurt Arsenal.

graziano pelle
Can Pelle do the damage against Arsenal

For Southampton, two weeks ago, their players could not put a foot wrong. There were hopes that a back-four of Jose Fonte, Nathaniel Clyne, Toby Alderweireld and Ryan Bertrand (both on loan) could hold teams at bay, while Dusan Tadic and Graziano Pelle were attacking opposition defences relentlessly. One defeat to Manchester City has opened them up to scrutiny, as they looked like a third-rate team in comparison to Manchester City, who have not had a great start to their season, but who went ahead due to moments of genius from their gifted individual players. A game against Arsenal at this point could kill their confidence, or could trigger them to fight and prove that they are deserving of a spot in Europe, too. The impending return of James Ward-Prowse will add creativity to their midfield, and Tadic or Sadio Mane can get a game off, if required.

For Arsenal, Alexis Sanchez will be the man who fires Arsenal to victory. He is easily Arsenal’s best player on the pitch and another good performance from him could lead Arsenal closer to the top-4. For Southampton, Graziano Pelle will have to find his goal-scoring form, while Fraser Forster will have to perform to the best of his ability between the sticks.

Arsenal vs Southampton Possible Lineups:

Arsenal: (4-1-4-1): Wojciech Szczesny – Calum Chambers, Per Mertesacker, Laurent Koscielny, Nacho Monreal – Mathieu Flamini – Alexis Sanchez, Santi Cazorla, Aaron Ramsey, Danny Welbeck – Olivier Giroud

Southampton (4-3-3): Fraser Forster – Nathaniel Clyne, Jose Fonte, Toby Alderweireld, Ryan Bertrand – Steven Davis, Victor Wanyama, Morgan Schneiderlin – Dusan Tadic, Shane Long, Graziano Pelle

Arsenal vs Southampton Match Facts:

  • Olivier Giroud has scored three goals in his last two Premier League games against the Saints.
  • The Gunners are unbeaten in their last 19 home league games against the Saints (W14 D5).
  • Arsene Wenger has come up against Ronald Koeman on seven occasions, winning just one match, drawing four and losing two.
  • Arsenal have been trailing at some point in five of their six Premier League games at the Emirates Stadium this season.
  • Nathaniel Clyne has found the net in two of this last three appearances against Arsenal at the Emirates, the winner in the Capital One Cup this season and an own goal in a 1-6 defeat in the league in September 2012.

Facts compiled from Eurosport.com

Arsenal vs Southampton Prediction:

A 2-1 win for the home side.

Injury Update: Huge Boost For Arsenal Ahead Of Saints Clash

Arsenal Injury Update

Arsenal will be hoping to get continue their good form as they will be gunning for 3 crucial points against Southampton in mid-week. Arsenal have many injury worries ahead of the game as Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Wojciech Szczesny, Yaya Sanogo, Kieran Gibbs and Nacho Monreal are all doubt for the clash against a well-drilled Southampton side. According to some reports, Wenger may force Flamini to play as left back if Gibbs don’t recover on time for the clash.

Anyway, the huge boost for the gunners is not about their own injuries. Southampton’s main midfielder Morgan Schneiderlin is expected to miss the game after sustaining an injury against Manchester City last weekend. Morgan Schneiderlin is one of the main man in Saints’ midfield, who orchestrates their game-play with his passing and ball winning skills.

Southampton manager Ronald Koeman confirmed the news after the defeat vs the defending league champions.

He said,

“Morgan’s not ready for Wednesday because he needs a scan on his adductor, in his right leg, to find out exactly what happened,”

“It’s too soon to know whether it’s serious. It’s not too soon to say he can’t play on Wednesday, but how long he will be out I don’t know.”

Southampton are currently sitting 3rd in the league with 26 points which is 6 points more than what the gunners have managed so far. This is a nice opportunity for the North Londoners to close the gap with Saints who will traveling to Emirates without their influential Frenchman Morgan Schneiderlin.

EPL: Team Of The Season So Far Featuring Chelsea, Manchester United & Southampton Stars

The local leagues around the World have had a break for a week now and things will resume this weekend. This gives us the opportunity to look at some of the star performers in the English Premier League so far.

Manchester City and Chelsea have lived up to their billing as the two most likely teams to fight it out for the title while Southampton have surprised everyone with some strong showings, proving all those people wrong who were expecting a difficult season for them after a mass exodus of players.

Team of the season so far:


Thibaut Courtois:

The Belgian has been so good that Petr Cech, Chelsea’s first choice keeper for the last 9 years, had to wait for an unfortunate injury to make his first appearance this season. With an attack line like Chelsea’s, the focus was never going to be on their defence as Chelsea under Mourinho have always been a good defensive unit. But had it not been for Courtois’ key saves in the opening few games, the blues would have lost many more points.

Clean sheets: 2

Saves made: 7


César Azpilicueta:

Sometimes, it’s really hard for some people to acknowledge the fact that Azpilicueta is a world class defender. Why? because he isn’t a very modern and flashy full back. The Spaniard just gets on with the game and does everything the manager asks him to do, without causing too much fuss or attention. The former Marseille man has been so good that £20m signing Filipe Luis has rarely made it to the first team.

Interceptions/game: 2.14

Tackles won/game: 3

Clearances/game: 5.14

John Terry:

Since the arrival of Jose Mourinho, Terry has found a new lease of life. The former England international was relegated to the bench by Rafael Benitez before making a strong comeback last season under Mourinho. In the heart of defence, Terry and Cahill formed a formidable partnership that resulted in Chelsea having the best defensive record last season. This season, Chelsea have the 2nd best defensive record so far, largely thanks to the their captain.

Interceptions/game: 0.86

Tackles won/game: 1.29

Clearances/game: 5.86

Jose Fonte:

With the departure of Dejan Lovren to Liverpool, a lot was expected of Fonte by manager Ronald Koeman (let’s not talk about the fans as they had pretty much given up all hope on Southampton) and the Portuguese has definitely lived up to it. Fonte isn’t the quickest defender, but his strength and reading of the game has made up for it so far. Southampton boast the best defensive record so far in the league thanks to Fonte’s leadership skills. About time he gets regular game time for Portugal!

Interceptions/game: 3

Tackles won/game: 1.43

Clearances/game: 4.86

Branislav Ivanovic: 

The Serbian has been a model of consistency in the last few years and has proved his versatility at the same time. He probably had his best season at right back in the last campaign and has carried that form this year too. He has been a menace in the opposition penalty box so far after joining in attacks and has 2 goals to his name. Ivanovic hasn’t shied away from his defensive duties either, as indicated by the stats below.

Interceptions/game: 1.71

Tackles won/game: 2.57

Clearances/game: 4.86


Morgan Schneiderlin:

After an unsettled summer at the club, the main question being thrown at Schneiderlin was can he get his head right and help prevent a calamitous start for Southampton. The answer is pretty much in the league table! The Frenchman got his head right from the start, and a strong showing against the Liverpool midfield in the opening day was a sign of things to come. The presence of Wanyama has helped him too, but it would be wrong to take away the deserved credit from Schneiderlin, who has shown brilliant energy at the middle of the park.

Interceptions/game: 2

Pass completion: 88%

Cesc Fabregas:

Any team would be incomplete with a playmaker, and if you lack some one of Fabregas’ quality then your team is definitely incomplete! The former Arsenal man has returned to the Premier League and how! He has 7 assists in 7 games so far, and his partnership with Diego Costa looks like the one that could lead Chelsea to the title come May.

Assists: 7

Key passes: 7

Pass completion: 85%

Angel Di Maria: 

di maria

Being the most expensive signing in the Premier League will have some amount of burden on your shoulders, but ask Di Maria that question and he wont know what you are talking about! The Argentine has been in mouthwatering form and has carried Manchester United single handedly at times. His pace, trickery, delivery have been immaculate so far. Such good is his form that even miss-hit shots turn into assists!

Goals: 3

Assists: 3

Key passes: 13

Gylfi Sigurdsson:

Sigurdsson’s return to Swansea has been a happy one so far as the Icelandic international has been at the heart of Swansea’s attack this season. The Welsh side find themselves 5th in the league largely due to the creativity and awareness of the 25-year old. He has the second highest number of assists, behind only to Fabregas.

Assists: 6

Key passes: 12

Pass completion: 84%


Graziano Pellè:

From being an unknown material to possibly winning the best goal of the year award; there is only so much that one can achieve in a span of weeks! Graziano Pellè’s arrival at Southampton is exactly what the fans needed after the departure of key stalwarts is Adam lallana and Rickie Lambert. Pellè has surprised everyone with his pace, skills and finishing- probably the best at the moment after a certain Diego Costa!

Goals: 4

Diego Costa:

Costa’s arrival is already being termed as the ‘final piece of the jigsaw’ that Chelsea lacked last season. The Spanish international has it all – Pace, strength, trickery, and finishing! 9 goals in 7 appearances, need we say more?

Goals: 9

EPL Team Of The Season - Football tactics and formationsStats via Whoscored


Predicted Arsenal XI To Face Saints – Injured Star To Make A Shocking Comeback

Arsenal face an in-form Southampton side  in the Capital One Cup on Tuesday night. Considering all the available options for Arsene Wenger, let’s see how Arsenal will lineup against their premier league counterparts.

About Diaby is Back
About Diaby is Back

Arsenal Predicted Lineup vs Southampton

Goal Keeper And Defense

David Ospina – Ospina is expected to start the game after fully recovering from a thigh injury.

Hector Bellerin – Arsenal youngster is set for his second senior team start of this season, first one coming in a champions league defeat against Borussia Dortmund

Calum Chambers – This man is everywhere at the moment. After playing as right back last week, the versatile English star will play as central defender against the Saints. He will be handed a tough job of leadering the defense against the Ronald Koeman’s men.

Isaac Hayden – Arsenal’s U-21 captain is expected to get a call up to partner with Chambers in the central defense.

Nacho Monreal – Even though Kieren Gibbs is back from injury, The Spanish full back will start mostly so that Gibbs will be kept fresh for the next premier league game.

 Midfield And Strike Force

Abou Diaby – (Yes, he still plays for Arsenal) is expected to make a stunning comeback after a long injury lay-off. He is likely to be utilized as a box-to-box CM. Good luck Abou!

Francis Coquelin will be given another opportunity to impress the coaching staffs. He will take up the holding midfielder role to protect the defenders at the back.

Joel Campbell – Costa Rican who came into spotlight after an impressive World cup, is currently struggling to get regular game time with the North London side. He is expected to start from the right wing.

Thomas Rosicky – The Veteran Arsenal play-maker will take up his favorite no 10 role behind the striker. He will look to use his deft touch skills to create space for other attacking players around him.

Lukas Podolski – Another player who is struggling to get into the starting line-up. The German World Cup winner is expected to start from the left wing. Expect some left-footed thunderbolts from him.

Yaya Sanogo – The French youngster will lead the lineup for the Gunners. He will look to use his physical presence against a solid Southampton defense.

Arsenal Predicted Lineup vs Southampton


Bellerin  Hayden   Chambers   Monreal

         Coquelin    Diaby

Campbell            Rosicky      Podolski