Thursday, January 21, 2021

Prediction: Southampton vs Manchester United

 

Verdict: Both teams to score

Best Odds: 7/10

Bookmaker: Unibet

Looking to cause an upset at St. Mary’s this weekend, Southampton will welcome Manchester United to the South Coast on Sunday afternoon.

Southampton

Starting with the hosts, while Southampton would have been disappointed to have had to settle for a point away at Wolves after taking the lead on Monday night, the Saints have hugely impressed since opening the 2020/2021 campaign. Still firmly battling it out in the European spots, Ralph Hasenhüttl’s men find themselves enjoying a glittering seven-match Premier League unbeaten run that stems all the way back to September 20th. Making a host of alterations after opening the New Year with back-to-back defeats at the hands of Tottenham and Crystal Palace, the former RB Leipzig boss finds the mood in his camp at a real high. In fact, managing to soldier on without attacking MVP Danny Ings, Southampton are enjoying their longest top-flight unbeaten run since November 2013. It is also worth noting that they hold an eye-catching record against Sunday’s guests. Including back-to-back draws, Southampton have lost just one of their last five meetings against Manchester United.

Team News

Southampton remain without Danny Ings and Nathan Redmond because of respective knee and hamstring injuries.

Theo Walcott will continue playing despite having a broken bone in his left wrist.

Manchester United

As for the visitors, managing to right their Champions League wrong against Turkish outfit Istanbul Basaksehir earlier in the week thanks to a 4-1 win at Old Trafford, Manchester United will now be desperate to kick on and find some much-needed stability. Opening this weekend’s sat in the bottom-half of the table, the former champions have largely struggled to impress since opening the new domestic campaign. However, while they might have just about managed to snatch that extremely controversial 1-0 win against West Brom last week, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men do find themselves enjoying a three-match winning run across all formats. If United are to come past what could be a tricky trip to St. Mary’s this weekend, they will be calling on Bruno Fernandes to lead their charge. Including a brace in midweek, the former Sporting Lisbon man has five goals in just his last three domestic outings.

Team News

Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has said it is “very unlikely” that either Paul Pogba or Scott McTominay will be available.

Luke Shaw is still out but Marcus Rashford, Victor Lindelof and Aaron Wan-Bissaka should all be fit.

Key Factors to Consider

  • Including a 2-2 draw when the two sides faced off at Old Trafford back in July, Southampton and Manchester United have played out back-to-back stalemates.
  • The Reds have won just one of their previous five meetings against Sunday’s hosts.
  • Southampton are unbeaten in their last seven Premier League matchups, their brightest run since November 2013.
  • Bruno Fernades has scored five goals in his last three domestic appearances for Manchester United.
  • The Saints have scored two goals in each of their four Premier League home matchups this season.

Conclusion

On paper, we could be in for a lively contest when the two sides face off at St. Mary’s this weekend. While Manchester United might have managed to land a 4-1 win in midweek and extend their winning run to three contests on the bounce, they should face a stern test against a high-flying Southampton. Picking up a point away at Wolves on Monday night, the Saints are in the midst of a stunning seven-match Premier League unbeaten run, their longest unbeaten spell since November 2013. In a matchup that could see chances at both ends of the pitch, we’re backing both teams to find the net on the South Coast this weekend.

Verdict: Both teams to score

Best Odds: 7/10

Bookmaker: Unibet

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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