By 90Min
March 09, 2018

17th placed Southampton make the 644-mile round trip to face 16th placed Newcastle United on Saturday afternoon, for a what could be a hugely significant match in the battle to stay in the Premier League. 

The Saints won just one of their last 15 Premier League games, while the only defeats Newcastle have suffered since the turn of the year have come away at Manchester City and Liverpool.

Here is all you need to know about a potentially crucial match.

Classic Encounter

Matthew Lewis/GettyImages

Goals are often a feature of clashes between these two, with the sides drawing 2-2 at St Mary's earlier in the season. 

They also produced a thrilling match in February 2013. Southampton, who were managed by Mauricio Pochettino, took the lead early on through Morgan Schneiderlin but they trailed at half time thanks to goals from Moussa Sissoko and Papiss Cisse. 

Southampton levelled shortly after the break with Rickie Lambert scoring but Newcastle would not denied going 3-2 ahead with a Yohan Cabaye penalty. An own goal from Jos Hooiveld would seal a hugely important win for Alan Pardew's side. 

Recent Form

Newcastle are unbeaten at St James' Park in 2018, with their last home match resulting in a superb 1-0 win over Manchester United. The other three home matches since the turn of the year have all resulted in draws. Rafa Benitez suffered a bad return to Anfield last weekend with his side going down 2-0 to Liverpool.

Southampton have only one win in their last 15 Premier League matches, that coming at bottom side West Brom in early February. Their last two league matches have been both ended in draws against Burnley and Stoke. The Saints do have an FA Cup quarter final to look forward to though, against Manchester City's conquerors Wigan Athletic.

Key Battle

Dwight Gayle vs Shane Long

Julian Finney/GettyImages

Both Newcastle and Southampton have struggled for goals this season. Southampton have scored 29 goals in 29 matches with Newcastle finding the net 27 times. 

Only Huddersfield Town and West Brom have scored less. The Saints' top scorer, Charlie Austin, is currently out injured so responsibility for goals falls onto the shoulders of Shane Long, who has only one goal this season. Newcastle's top scorer is Dwight Gayle, who only has five.


Laurence Griffiths/GettyImages

Considering how important a victory could be for either side this weekend, an attacking game seems unlikely. Newcastle will be hoping to build on that victory over Manchester United and the home crowd at St James' Park could well help them over the line.

Prediction: Newcastle 2-0 Southampton

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