In the Saints last seven home matches in the EPL they have scored two or more goals six times. Their good season form has taken a dip in the past three matches with two losses and a draw, but this is their chance to turn things around if they are able to get a result against Chelsea.
Chelsea come into Wednesday’s match sitting in third place and only two points off the top spot. Many have accused the Blues of being overly negative this season, but they do have the fourth most goals this season with 35 while also only allowing 19 goals, third best in the league. This stereotype seems to come from some of their more aggressive fouls, some of which go unpunished.
In their 2-1 win over Liverpool they had 52% possession against a team that has averaged 55%. They also took 11 shots with five on target for their two goals. It was a match that they dominated and controlled after giving up an early goal.
What to expect
This will be the fifth meeting between these two sides in just under a year with goals generally assured when the two have come to blows (17 in their previous 4 encounters). Jay Rodriguez has opened the scoring in 3 of those 4 matches and has 6 goals in his last 7 games, while John Terry has netted in each of the last two meetings between the sides.
Morgan Schneiderlin is back available following a suspension and should take either Ward-Prowse or Cork’s place in midfield. Gaston Ramirez, who has fallen down the pecking order under Pocchetino, will hope for a rare start after his wonder goal from the bench against Everton. Pablo Osvaldo misses out through illness.
Ramires returns from suspension but David Luiz has picked up a one match ban so it will be a like-for-like swap in midfield. Both Ivanovic and Lampard picked up injuries against Liverpool and are unlikely to feature so Cole and Mikel should start from the outset on Wednesday. Mourinho could rotate his team in attack with Mata, Schurrle and Torres all left out of the line-up against Liverpool.
Predicted Starting Line-Ups
Mourinho’s side look like they are starting to gel after a bumpy start and Southampton have slipped down the table of late having faced a tough run of fixtures so the visitors will be favourites in this one.
Southampton 1-2 Chelsea