By 90Min
April 27, 2018

Southampton take on Bournemouth at St. Mary's Stadium on Saturday, in what is a crucial game for the survival hopes for the hosts. 

The Saints currently sit in the third and final relegation place in the table, four points from safety with just four games left to play. The south coast club are without a win in their last eight Premier League outings, and will need the three points to keep any hopes of survival alive. 

On the other hand, Bournemouth have enjoyed another successful season in the Premier League, and sit in a respectable eleventh place in the table. Although, Eddie Howe's side have only managed to record one win in their last nine league games - a 2-1 win over bottom of the table West Bromwich Albion

Here is everything you need to know about the battle of two south coast clubs.


Classic Encounter 

Southampton 2-0 Bournemouth (October 2010)

This was the first league meeting between the sides in over 50 years, and it took place in the third tier of English football - which shows just how far the two clubs have come over the years. 

Jan Kruger/GettyImages

This game was ultimately decided by two Rickie Lambert penalties either side of half time. The former England international put the ball past the Bournemouth 'keeper after Rhoys Wiggins was penalised for a handball inside the area. 


Morgan Schneiderlin was brought down inside of the area 10 minutes into the second half, and Lambert again made no mistake from the penalty spot to double the Saints' lead. 

Adam Smith also saw red for the Cherries three minutes from time for a second bookable offence. 

Bryn Lennon/GettyImages

Southampton went onto earn automatic promotion that season, while Bournemouth qualified for the playoffs - losing to Huddersfield Town in the Semi-final. 


Key Battle


James Ward-Prowse vs Lewis Cook

The battle of the one-cap England midfielders. James Ward-Prowse has played the majority of the season playing in the right of midfield, but has lined up in an attacking midfield role in the last three league games. The 23-year-old has three goals and three assists in 27 league appearances this season. 

Lewis Cook made his senior England debut against Italy last month, and has made the same amount of league appearances than his opponent on Saturday - 27. The 21-year-old plies his trade in a more defensive midfield position, but has still contributed two assists for his team. 


Team News

Southampton have no injury concerns ahead of the crucial clash, with Mario Lemina expected to be fit after making a return from a back injury in the FA Cup semi-final last week.

Steven Davis and Shane Long have recently returned from injury, and should be available for selection at the weekend. 

Junior Stanislas will not be available for Bournemouth due to a knee injury that will keep him out for the rest of the season. Tyrone Mings is making his return from injury, but is not expected to be fit enough to feature at the weekend. 

Full back Adam Smith is also a major doubt after missing the last four league outings because of a knee injury, but could make his return next week against Swansea. 


Prediction

Both teams are not in the best run of form, both only having won one of their last nine games in the league. While not mathematically safe, it can be presumed that Bournemouth will be playing Premier League football next season. 

Southampton will be desperate for the win in order to keep their hopes of Premier League football next season alive. They have a good record against the Cherries, having won 12 of the 26 games between the two sides (D7, L7).

The Saints have been unlucky not to pick up more points over the last few weeks, having taken the lead against both Arsenal and Chelsea, and their desperation for points may just be reflected in the game. 

Prediction: Southampton 2-1 Bournemouth   

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