St Mary’s Stadium - Premier League
Chelsea make the short trip to the south coast on Sunday afternoon, as Maurizio Sarri’s side face Southampton at St Mary’s. Both teams could use a win, with this game coming on the back of midweek action for each side.
Chelsea beat Southampton three times last season, including an FA Cup semi-final at Wembley. In fact, the Blues have won their last six games against the Saints, with Southampton’s last victory in this fixture coming courtesy of a 3-1 win at Stamford Bridge in 2015.
Mark Hughes has said that Shane Long’s injury isn’t settling down as anticipated, meaning he’s set to miss this match. Apart from that, the Saints boss has a fully-fit squad to choose from for this difficult test.
Chelsea also have a relatively clean bill of health, with a trio of players expected to return from injury. Pedro, Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Andreas Christensen could all be available to Maurizio Sarri, which would be useful after Thursday’s Europa League game.
Southampton v Chelsea Preview and Predictions
This season is going to be a tough one at the bottom of the Premier League table. After their struggles last season, Southampton don’t want to be dragged down into a relegation battle, but their early form suggests that may be the case. With Chelsea the visitors to St Mary’s this weekend, a fifth defeat in eight looks on the cards for the Saints.
Mark Hughes has added some more firepower to his side with the acquisition of Danny Ings, who’s started the campaign in fine form. However, he needs more from Charlie Austin, who is yet to score this season. If those two can strike up a potent partnership, Southampton will be fine this season, and have a chance of a result on Sunday.
The hosts are 11/2 for the victory, with Chelsea the obvious favourites at 13/20. The Blues may have drawn their last two Premier League games, but they’ve been excellent at the start of the season, and have the league’s best player on current form in Eden Hazard. If the Belgian’s on song here, it could be a long afternoon for the home team. If he’s not, Southampton will have a better chance of snatching a point, with the draw priced at 3/1.
Chelsea to win and both teams to score at 12/5
Southampton have a number of players capable of scoring, but the Blues should have far too much for their hosts.
Hazard to score first at 4/1
Chelsea’s No.10 scored two incredible goals in the double header with Liverpool last week, and is looking for his eighth of the season here.