Southampton v Watford Predictions, Betting Tips and Previews

January 23, 2018

- Grant Whittington

St Mary’s - FA Cup

New Watford boss Javi Gracia takes charge of the Hornets for the first time as his side face Southampton at St Mary’s in the FA Cup. Mauricio Pellegrino must be fearing for his own job after his side’s alarming slump over recent weeks.

Past Meetings

A last minute goal from Abdoulaye Doucoure rescued a point for Watford just a couple of weeks ago, after a James Ward-Prowse brace had given Southampton a 2-0 lead at half time. There hasn’t been a home win in the last four games between these two, with Watford winning 2-0 at St Mary’s earlier this season.

Team News

Charlie Austin misses out as the English striker continues to recover from a thigh injury. Shane Long and Maya Yoshida could return for the Saints though, which would be a major boost for the hosts at both ends of the pitch.

Gracia has inherited a squad riddled with injuries, which has contributed to Watford’s slide down the Premier League table. Yours Kaboul, Nathaniel Chalobah, Miguel Britos, Issac Success and Will Hughes are all out, although Tom Cleverley, Jose Holebas and Heurelho Gomes could return to the side.

Southampton v Watford Preview and Predictions

This is a clash between two of the Premier League’s most out of sorts sides, but it remains to be seen whether they carry their league form into the FA Cup. Both sets of supporters could view this game as a welcome respite from their recent struggles.

Southampton have slipped into the relegation zone, as their strategy of regularly replacing their manager and selling their best players looks to be finally catching up with the club. The third round win against Fulham is the Saints’ only win in their last 12 games, and Pellegrino could rotate a few players bearing in mind the threat to both Southampton’s top flight status and his job. The hosts still start this game as favourites in the betting though, priced at 10/11.

Watford’s victory over Bristol City in the last round is one of just two games they’ve won in their last 12, with the Hornets now just four points above the drop zone despite their impressive start to the season. Marco Silva has lost his job as the club’s owners claim his head was turned by Everton, and they’re looking for a bounce from the new manager. Gracia is 10/3 to get his reign off to a winning start, while the draw is priced at 27/10, with a replay far from ideal for both sides.

Recommended Bets

Southampton to win and both teams to score at 16/5

The hosts are favourites in the betting, but after losing their best defender Virgil van Dijk to Liverpool, they’ve been weakened at the back. Ward-Prowse to score in a Saints win is 7/1.

Watford to win 1-0 at 12/1

Back the Hornets to rise to the challenge of their new boss, as they nick a narrow win. Predict Doucoure as the man to get the goal and the odds increase to 80/1.

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