Southampton v Stoke City
Saturday, Mar 03 – 15:00
Southampton held Burnley to a 1-1 draw when they travelled to Turf Moor last weekend, thanks to a 90th minute goal from Manolo Gabbiadini. In his post-match interview, manager Mauricio Pellegrino admitted that he hoped the goal would help Gabbiadini regain his confidence, and with just four goals to show for his 23 league appearances this season, Saints fans will be expecting more from the Italian striker. Southampton start the day 16th in the Premier League table, with only goal difference separating them from 18th placed Swansea.
Stoke City were held to a 1-1 draw by Leicester in their last league game, with a second-half mistake from goalkeeper Jack Butland costing the Potters a much needed three points. Paul Lambert was full of praise for Xherdan Shaqiri following the match, and the Swiss winger has been in top form over the last few weeks – he could be a key figure for Lambert tomorrow. Stoke City currently sit 19th in the Premier League table – a win today could see them move two points above the relegation zone.
Let’s take a look at the stats:
- Southampton have only managed to win two of their last 11 matches against Stoke City in the Premier League (D5 L4).
- The Potters won 2-1 in the reverse fixture back in September, the last time they did the league double over Southampton was in the 1967/68 season.
- Stoke City have won each of their last two visits to St Mary’s by a 1-0 scoreline.
- The Saints have only managed to win one of their last 15 games in the Premier League (D8 L6) – they are without a win at St Mary’s in seven league fixtures.
- Stoke City have conceded 54 goals in the Premier League this season – more than any other club in the competition.
- Southampton have conceded and scored in 17 of their 28 matches in the Premier League this season – thats one more than in their entire 2016/17 campaign.
- Paul Lambert has only beaten Southampton once in eight attempts in all competitions (D4 L3) – winning 3-2 with Aston Villa in 2014.
- Peter Crouch has found the back of the net 12 times in 53 Premier League games against his former clubs – four of those goals have come for Stoke against Southampton.
- Manolo Gabbiadini managed to end a 16 match goalless run in his last match for the Saints – he has failed to score in successive games since March 2017.
- Saido Berahino has now failed to find the back of the net in over two years (February 2016) – he has played 2324 minutes for both Stoke and West Brom, and missed three penalties.
- Xherdan Shaqiri has scored four goals from outside the box in the Premier League this season – more than any other player (level with Coutinho and De Bruyne).
This is a massive game for both clubs, as three-points tomorrow could be hugely significant come the end of the season. Southampton have managed to just about scrape themselves free of the relegation zone, and whilst Mauricio Pellegrino will see a point away at Burnley as a positive result, he’ll be expecting more tomorrow. Stoke have been unlucky over their last few league matches – the penalty save against Brighton, the Jack Butland mistake against Leicester. They have a good home record against the Saints, but they’re relying too heavily of Xherdan Shaqiri at the moment, and it’s hard to see them taking all three points. Neither side can afford to lose however, so a draw could be a likely result.