Friday, August 7, 2020

Prediction: Southampton vs Manchester City

Verdict: Manchester City half-time/full-time 

Best Odds: 20/21

Bookmaker: Bet365

Looking to build off of what was a thumping display in midweek, Manchester City will make the trip to an empty St. Mary’s on Sunday night.

Southampton

Starting with the hosts, putting in another eye-catching display on their travels last weekend and picking up a thumping 3-1 win away at relegation scrappers Watford, Southampton have all but confirmed their Premier League status after a worrying start to the campaign. Now with their sights set on finding a route into the top-half, the Saints have collected six points since returning from the break and have gained a reputation for their performances away from the South Coast. Marking their return from the enforced break with a 3-0 romp away at Carrow Road last month, Ralph Hasenhüttl’s men remarkably hold the fifth-best away day record in the Premier League. However, while leading marksman Danny Ings might be continuing on a remarkable run of form that has seen him bag three strikes in as many appearances, Sunday’s hosts have shown plenty of issues at St. Mary’s this season. Including an error-riddled showing in their 2-0 defeat against Arsenal last time out on the South Coast, the Saints have lost four of their last five top-flight home contests.

Team News

Southampton have no new injury concerns, although Sofiane Boufal is set to miss a third match because of a thigh injury sustained in training.

Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg is a major doubt as he continues to struggle with an ankle issue sustained against Arsenal.

Manchester City

As for the visitors, while Manchester City may have relinquished their Premier League title this time around, the Sky Blues really made a statement when they welcomed Liverpool to the Etihad in midweek. Handing the newly-crowned champions their worst defeat of the season and hitting the Reds for four on Thursday night, Pep Guardiola’s men appear to have bounced back from their Stamford Bridge defeat last month. Still firing in the FA Cup after booking a semi-final showdown against Arsenal thanks to a 2-0 win at St. James’ Park last week, the former Barcelona boss still has Champions League success at the top of his agenda. With midfield talisman Kevin De Bruyne enjoying a scintillating purple patch and now finding the net in each of his last three appearances on the bounce, Sunday’s guests also hold what is a rampant record against the South Coast strugglers. While they might have been hit with back-to-back Premier League defeats on the road for the first time since December 2018, the Sky Blues have won each of their last six straight meetings against Southampton.

Team News

Manchester City are likely to rotate their squad after Thursday’s win against Liverpool, with Riyad Mahrez and Bernardo Silva in contention.

Sergio Aguero is City’s only injury absentee.

Key Factors to Consider

  • Including a 2-1 win at the Etihad earlier in the season, Manchester City have won each of their last six straight meetings against the Saints.
  • Midfielder Kevin De Bruyne has scored in his last three appearances on the bounce.
  • Southampton have lost four of their last five Premier League matches at St. Mary’s and hold the worst home record of any side in the top-flight, collecting just 14 points.
  • The Sky Blues have lost back-to-back Premier League matches on the road for the first time since December 2018.
  • Saints striker Danny Ings has recorded three goals in as many appearances since returning from the enforced break.

Conclusion

While Manchester City might have shown some recent continued issues on the road, Sunday’s trip to St. Mary’s is a golden opportunity for them to build off of a stunning display in midweek. With Southampton collecting just 14 points on home soil this season and holding the worst home record of any Premier League outfit, it should also be noted that the Saints have lost each of their last six straight meetings against the now-former champions. Hitting Liverpool for four on Thursday night, it is hard to see anything other than another rampant display from Pep Guardiola’s men this weekend.

Verdict: Manchester City half-time/full-time

Best Odds: 20/21

Bookmaker: Bet365

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Tom Dunstan


Formerly of The Independent, Tom is a freelance football and boxing journalist from Essex, England. Currently working for three online publications, Tom is a graduate of the University of Falmouth and has spent the last two years writing across Australia, New Zealand and Asia. He can be followed at @IamTomDunstan

SHARE OR COMMENT ON THIS ARTICLE

WE RECOMMEND

Leave a Reply

avatar
 
smilegrinwinkmrgreenneutraltwistedarrowshockunamusedcooleviloopsrazzrollcryeeklolmadsadexclamationquestionideahmmbegwhewchucklesillyenvyshutmouth
  Subscribe  
Notify of
Live Scores

advertisement

Betting Guide Advertisement

advertisement

Become a Writer
More More
Top