Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Prediction: Southampton vs Manchester United

Verdict: Both teams to score and over 2.5 goals 

Best Odds: 6/5

Bookmaker: Bet365

Looking to bounce back from their shock defeat at Old Trafford last weekend, Manchester United will make the trip to St. Mary’s on Saturday lunchtime.

Southampton

Starting with the hosts, while back-to-back defeats against Burnley and Liverpool may have had many on the South Coast fearing that Southampton could once again be at the heart of a relegation scrap this season, the Saints have begun to show some signs of a boost. Picking up a 1-0 win away at Championship play-off hopefuls Fulham in midweek and securing their spot in the third round of this year’s EFL Cup, Ralph Hasenhüttl’s men also clinched a 2-0 win away at Brighton last weekend. With the former RB Leipzig boss desperate to find a route out of the bottom three heading into September, fans around St. Mary’s should also be boosted by their most recent performances against the former Premier League champions. Bagging five goals in their last two matches against Saturday’s guests, Southampton have also lost just five of their last 13 top-flight matchups against Manchester United, including a 2-2 draw at St. Mary’s back in December.

Team News

Southampton’s Nathan Redmond is out for at least two weeks after injuring his ankle in Tuesday’s Carabao Cup win, and joins Moussa Dejenpo on the sidelines. Michael Obafemi is likely to be absent after suffering cramp in midweek, while Ryan Bertrand is back in training but it remains to be seen if he is fit.

Manchester United

As for the visitors, while a bright summer run may have had many around Old Trafford dreaming of a top-four return come May, Manchester United suffered a last-gasp 2-1 defeat at home to Crystal Palace last weekend and Head Coach Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will be demanding an immediate response on Saturday. Now winning just one of their opening three top-flight contests, including throwing away a one-goal lead at Wolves last week, United’s Norweigan icon will also have some growing concerns over the former champions form outside of Manchester. Remarkably, the Red Devils have failed to win any of their last five Premier League matches on the road, with that run also including a 1-1 draw away at an already relegated Huddersfield back in May. Despite still struggling with some defensive issues, fans around Old Trafford will be impressed by Daniel James’ start to Premier League life. The Wales international has now scored in back-to-back contests and will make the trip South filled with confidence.

Team News

Manchester United are without Luke Shaw and Anthony Martial, who have hamstring and thigh injuries respectively. Defensive trio Diogo Dalot, Eric Bailly and Timothy Fosu-Mensah are also out.

Key Factors to Consider

  • Manchester United have won five of their last 13 Premier League matches against Southampton.
  • When the two sides last met at St. Mary’s they played out a 2-2 draw.
  • United winger Daniel James has now scored in back-to-back Premier League matches.
  • The last two meetings between the two sides have produced nine goals.
  • United have failed to win any of their last five Premier League matches on the road.

Conclusion

Although Manchester United will make the trip to St. Mary’s expecting nothing less than three points, Saturday’s matchup could prove to be a close-fought contest. With Southampton undoubtedly boosted by getting off the mark away at Brighton last time out and famously enjoying their fixtures against the former champions, we’re backing both sides to play out a similar contest to the one that finished 2-2 on the South Coast back in December.

Verdict: Both teams to score and over 2.5 goals 

Best Odds: 6/5

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

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