Stoke vs Southampton – Premier League preview and team news

Southampton will move back up to fifth place and move to within just two points of a Champions League if they can beat mid-table Stoke City for a third time this season in all competitions.

The hosts were seconds away from suffering a fourth straight defeat in their last game at West Ham United, but persistence paid off for Marko Arnautovic as he netted the last-gasp equaliser with a ruthless finish when it looked like he would be left to rue two efforts ruled out for offside.

It was due reward for a strong team performance, with the occasionally enigmatic Austrian showing his quality. Here, his battle with the in-form Ryan Bertrand will be a fascinating one as the Potters look for their first Premier League victory over their opponents in a fixture which saw goalkeeper Asmir Begovic score memorably last season.

Graziano Pelle was the hero as Saints triumphed at the Britannia Stadium in the Capital One Cup earlier in the campaign, and he finally put an end to his lengthy domestic goal drought with a second half strike against Hull City; a 2-0 win which reignited hopes of a top four finish.

With Manchester City – who they face on the final day – fading dramatically, Ronald Koeman’s side will be greatly encouraged as they attempt to upset the odds and make Europe’s top competition. This will be a tricky game, however, and they will need to improve on a poor recent away run.

Victor Moses is out for Stoke after suffering a hamstring injury, so joins Bojan Krkic and Peter Odemwingie on their list of absentees.

The away side are still without Fraser Forster and loanee Filip Djuricic, while Victor Wanyama begins a two-match ban after receiving his 10th yellow card of the campaign.

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