Southampton faces Liverpool in the English Premier League on Tuesday night. The hosts are going through their usual end-of-season slump with seven losses in ten matches. Liverpool secured the FA Cup on Sunday to complete a domestic double and have won 14 of their last 15 matches away from Anfield (including penalty shootout victories). The visitors are, however, set to rotate their side heavily due to a very short turnaround time from Saturday’s cup final.
After a run of five wins and three draws in nine matches to secure their Premier League status, Saints have gone into their annual freefall. They have just one win since March and have lost seven of their last ten matches, picking up five points in total.
Losing 4-0 at Aston Villa was followed by two more losses before a 1-1 draw at Leeds. A humiliating 6-0 home loss to Chelsea came next. That seemed to stir Saints’ pride and they put up a strong display to beat Arsenal 1-0 at home in the next match. They’ve followed that with just one point from the next four matches and were beaten 3-0 at Brentford last time out.
Southampton Team News
Fraser Forster is a doubt in goal after a back problem. He has been outstanding this season and could return in time to start this one. Stuart Armstrong, a key figure for his energy in midfield, is also a major doubt. Tino Livramento’s season is over due to a knee injury.
Ralph Hasenhuttl could go a bit more defensive in this one with Oriol Romeu recalled, possibly just selecting one striker and bringing in Lyanco or Yann Valery as a third center-back.
Saints will be very concerned about avoiding a thrashing, first and foremost. This is their last home match and we’ve seen the motivation boost that can give to clubs.
They would almost certainly take a draw from this match and look to end their season off in a more positive fashion to take into next season.
Liverpool are in amazing form with 25 wins in 29 matches. Two of those matches they didn’t win were when already in good positions in the Champions League. They’ve drawn two of their last 16 league matches, winning all the others. Just Man City (2-2) and Tottenham (1-1) have taken points off of them.
Their last four matches have seen a 3-2 win away to Villarreal to reach the Champions League final, before the 1-1 home draw with Spurs. They then went to Aston Villa and got a 2-1 win. On Saturday, they drew 0-0 with Chelsea after extra-time and lifted the FA Cup in penalty kicks.
Liverpool Team News
Jurgen Klopp has slammed the fixture scheduling and reports say he is set to rest at least seven players. Joe Gomez, Joel Matip, and Kostas Tsimikas look certain to play at the back alongside Ibrahima Konate, with Virgil Van Dijk out.
Fabinho is injured and both Thiago Alcantara and Jordan Henderson could get a rest. Curtis Jones and James Milner are likely to come into the XI. Up top, Diogo Jota will start but Mohamed Salah is out injured. Roberto Firmino should play and Divock Origi could be set for some rare minutes.
This is a must-win match to have any hope of lifting the title. A draw here effectively hands Man City the title on goal difference too. Liverpool are certain to be tired and will rely on any fresh legs who start. Expect Klopp to have Luis Diaz or Sadio Mane (or both) on the bench as players to turn the match.
Goal difference could be key so they will try to score a fair few if possible to try to catch up to Man City on that front.
Southampton have lost 7 of their last 10 PL matches (W1, D2)
Saints have conceded 24 goals in their last 10 PL matches (1 clean sheet)
Saints have lost 8 of their last 9 PL matches against Liverpool, conceding 2+ in each loss
Liverpool have won 25 of their last 29 matches (all comps, including shootouts)
Liverpool have won 14 of their last 15 away matches (1D)(incl. penalties)
Liverpool have scored 2+ goals in 7 of their last 10 away matches
Saints have been on the beach for months but can still pull out a good performance when they try (like beating Arsenal 1-0 at home straight after a 6-0 loss). Liverpool rotating players could make this match a bit closer but they should get over the line by a two-goal margin and keep the title race alive going into the final day.
Best Bet: Liverpool win (-1 goal spread) at 1.90
Alternative Bet: Liverpool win and Both to Score at 2.55
Goalscorer Tip: Diogo Jota to score anytime at 2.20