On Sunday 22February Southampton will host Liverpool on their home ground St. Mary’s in a Premier League fixture. Currently Saints are 4th in the table while Liverpool are 7th but in very impressive form since December 2014. Southampton’s form is fluctuating and also unpredictable, both these teams have world class players and hence a match between these two will be very exciting and will keep us in our edge of our seats. Here’s a starting XI made up of both Liverpool and Southampton players.
Goalkeeper – Fraser Forster
Based on current debatably Forster is the best goalkeeper in the Premier League and also one of the best in Europe. Forster has kept 12 clean sheets in last 25 Premier League games and he has conceded the least number of goals this season that is 17 which is quiet an impressive record.
Right Back – Nathaniel Clyne
Clyne is a wonderful right back whose major strengths are his excellent pace, pinpoint crossing and also has the eye for the goal and scores goals on crucial moments. Also he is a very consistent player whose form has not yet gone down, he is one is one of the best right backs in the Premier League and definitely the best in this list.
Center Back – Jose Fonte
Fonte is the most hardworking and unappreciated defender in the Premier League. He is one of the main reasons behind this impressive feat of Southampton as he is their focal point of the back four. Fonte is unarguably among the top three defenders in the Premier League and hence deserves to be in this line-up.
Center Back – Emre Can
Can is been playing in different positions for Liverpool since he has joined the club, but in recent days his performance has been the best in the center back position. This is clearly evident from the defensive record of Liverpool as they have not conceded many goals since Can has stepped up in the center back position. Can is in this XI mainly because of his versatility and the influence he has on the Liverpool squad.
Left Back – Ryan Bertrand
Bertrand is nowadays one of the best left backs in the Premier League because of his consistent performance this season. This 25 year old left back is a Chelsea reject who is been giving top notch performance in the Premier League with Southampton. Not only in defense Bertrand has also scored few vital goals in the Premier League. Hence he is a member of this starting XI.
Central Midfielder – Morgan Schneiderlin
Schneiderlin is one of the most important players in the Southampton squad and the most important piece in the midfield jigsaw. These days he is among the top 3 central midfielders in the Premier League and among the finest ones in the world. Morgan is an all round midfielder who contributes in defense as well as attack and scores goals when needed.
Central Midfielder – Steven Gerrard (Captain)
He has again proved that age is just a number by giving top class performance this season. Just like Schneiderlin Gerrard is an all round midfielder for Liverpool but a bit more influential one. This season Gerrard has netted 6 goals and has crafted 1 assist in 22 appearances. The main reason why he is in the list is his consistency and leadership qualities.
Right Winger – Jordan Henderson
In the occasional absence of Gerrard this man has led the Liverpool side and has been pretty impressive with the arm band. Apart from this Henderson is also a very influential player for the reds as this season he has racked up 2 goals and made 6 assists in 24 Premier League games while his contribution in defense also has been vital and he has not yet committed any defensive error. Hence he has made his way into this combined XI.
Attacking Midfielder – Philippe Coutinho
Coutinho is often accused for being inconsistent but the fact is he is a very key player for Liverpool this season and especially during this impressive feat. Coutinho is a very hardworking player whose presence is felt in both attacking and defensive third. This season till now he has scored 2 goals and made 4 assists in 22 Premier League appearances.
Left Winger – Steven Davis
If you go by numbers this player has not been impressive but it is rightly said that stats are not everything. Despite not scoring any goals or making many assists Davis has been a very key player for Saints mainly because of his industrious nature another reason why Davis is so important for Southampton are his playmaking abilities. Also he has no significant weakness and is a versatile player.
Forward – Raheem Sterling
In the absence of Sturridge and bad patch of Balotelli Sterling was the only reliable player who could play as forward in the Liverpool squad and he has done quiet and impressive job. Sterling has netted 5 goals but was very important for other players as he has created 53 chances in 22 Premier League games which bring him in the same bracket with Hazard and Fabregas. These are the reasons why Sterling has made his way into this lineup.