Southampton V Bournemouth
Saturday 1st April 2017
18:30 Kick Off Live on BT Sport 1
This will be the 25th occasion these two have met, in the previous 24 matches Southampton have won 12 of them, they have drawn 5 and Bournemouth have won 7 of them.
They last met in the reverse fixture of this at Vitality Stadium and Southampton managed a 3-1 away win. Nathan Ake managed to put the home side ahead in the 6th minute. Ryan Bertrand got the equaliser for Southampton in the first half then a 2nd half brace from Jay Rodriquez sealed a good win for the Saints.
Southampton have been in pretty poor form of late winning 2 and losing 4 of thier last 6 in all competitions. Last time out they suffered a 2-1 defeat to Tottenham.
Bournemouth have been in similar form themselves winning 2, drawing 1 and losing 3 of their last 6. They are currently on a 3 match unbeaten run and have won their last 2 including last time when they beat Swansea 2-0.
These two are both level on points at the moment on 33 points with Southampton ahead in 10th and Bournemouth in 11th but Southampton do have a couple of games in hand. A good result by either could take them above Stoke into 9th.
Southampton are still without 3 big players in Virgil Van Dijk who could be out for the remainder of the season, and strikers Manolo Gabbiadini and Charlie Austin who are both still out.
Bournemouth are without suspended Tyrone Mings, Adam Federici, Callum Wilson and Rhoys Wiggins are all out with knee injuries and they could also be without Lys Mousset, Ryan Fraser, Harry Arter and Junior Stanislas who will be late decisions.
Saints manager Claude Puel has said it is going to be difficult now having an almost fully fit squad to keep the players happy and motivated for the deep fixture list they have coming up.
Cherries boss Eddie Howe has said that he wants his players to make history and beat Southampton away for the first time in their history. He admitted it would be a difficult game but wanted to give the fans something to shout about.
Southampton are favourites for this and can be backed @ 4/6 with a few firms including Coral. The draw is @ 16/5 with a few firms including William Hills and Bournemouth are @ 5/1 with Bet365.
I fancy a draw here but could see why someone might back Southampton considering they are at home and have never lost to Bournemouth at home and Bournemouth are missing a lot of players.