Burnley will be hopeful of building on their memorable victory over the champions as they make the difficult trip to Hampshire to take on Southampton.
The hosts were involved in a hugely entertaining and captivating encounter in their last game as they held on to claim a draw against leaders Chelsea, withstanding a late barrage. However, the draw was deserved as they outplayed the Blues in the first half, with Sadio Mane and Dusan Tadic in particular causing problems.
Due to wins for Arsenal, Manchester United and Liverpool, qualification for the Champions League is now beginning to look more and more unlikely, but reaching the Europa League would still be a fine achievement to cap what has been a great season all round. All manager Ronald Koeman wants now is more goals from open play.
And Burnley are likely to come with a great amount of organisation, as they showed against Manchester City to earn a win which breathes new life in their bid to avoid the drop. George Boyd’s terrific strike was not only testament to their work rate; it also proved that they do not lack technical ability either.
Veteran defender Michael Duff returned to the back four in that game and was immense throughout, and he will have to be again if the Clarets are to take any points here. They will be encouraged by Southampton’s recent home struggles, as well as the fact they beat them in the reverse fixture in December.
Strikers Jay Rodriguez and Emmanuel Mayuka are the only absentees for Southampton, who could recall Eljero Elia and Graziano Pelle.
The visitors have no new injury problems, but will remain without the services of Kevin Long, Matt Taylor and Dean Marney.
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