The return of the Premier League this weekend sees Arsenal host Southampton on Sunday afternoon, as the Gunners look to maintain their push for a top four spot with victory over the Saints. 

Southampton are without a win in their last three games and a point away from safety in 18th place. However, they will be optimistic of their chances against Arsenal having won the reverse fixture 3-2 earlier this season. 

southampton-fc-v-arsenal-fc-premier-league-5c6f1d85f132d9d5a6000001.jpg

The Gunners progressed to the last 16 of the Europa League on Thursday, avoiding any embarrassment with a 3-0 win at home to BATE Borisov. Southampton were 2-1 losers in their last fixture against Cardiff City thanks to a late Kenneth Zohore strike. 

Here's everything you need to know ahead of Sunday's encounter

Image placeholder title

Where to Watch 


When Is Kick Off?

Sunday 24 February

What Time Is Kick Off?

14:05 (GMT)

Where Is it Played?

Emirates Stadium 

TV Channel/ Live Stream?

NBC Sports Gold

Referee?

Graham Scott 

Image placeholder title

Team News


Arsenal are likely to be without captain Laurent Koscielny, who went off injured with a muscular problem against BATE. Koscielny's knock adds to Unai Emery's injury worries, as Danny Welbeck, Rob Holding and Hector Bellerin are all long-term absentees. 

Alexandre Lacazette is available for selection having missed the Europa League win due to suspension. 

arsenal-v-bate-borisov-uefa-europa-league-round-of-32-second-leg-5c6fe48ff132d9b6f1000001.jpg

Saints manager Ralph Hassenhuttl has no fresh injury concerns, though Mario Lemina and Michael Obafemi have both been sidelined since December. 

Image placeholder title

Predicted Lineups


Arsenal

Leno; Maitland-Niles, Sokratis, Mustafi, Kolasinac; Guendouzi, Torreira, Xhaka; Iwobi; Lacazette, Aubameyang.

Southampton 

McCarthy; Valery, Bednarek, Stephens, Vestergaard, Bertrand; Højbjerg, Romeu, Ward-Prowse; Long, Austin.

Image placeholder title

Head to Head Record 


Of the 96 games played between the two sides, Arsenal have won 49 matches to Southampton's 21, with 26 games ending in a draw. 

The Saints won the reverse fixture between these teams back in December, when a Bernd Leno clanger gifted Charlie Austin a goal to win it for Southampton at the death. 

southampton-fc-v-arsenal-fc-premier-league-5c6f1fb6dd4bc72e4c000001.jpg

The Gunners have found success hard to come by against the men from the south coast. Arsenal have won only four of their past ten matches against Southampton, which included a humbling 4-0 defeat on Boxing Day in 2015. 

Image placeholder title

Recent Form


Arsenal's form has lacked consistency since the turn of the year, as Emery's side have failed to win consecutive matches since January. 

The men from north London avoided embarrassment in midweek by sweeping aside BATE 3-0 in the second leg of their last 32 Europa League tie after losing the first leg 1-0 in Belarus. 

Southampton are struggling for form themselves, having failed to win any of their past three fixtures in all competitions. 

The Saints were condemned to a last-gasp defeat against Cardiff in their previous match and they have failed to keep a clean sheet since the start of January, which is an ominous sign for their trip to the Emirates. 

Here is how each team has performed in their past five matches. 

Arsenal

Southampton

Arsenal 3-0 BATE Borisov (21/2)

Southampton 1-2 Cardiff City (9/2)

BATE Borisov 1-0 Arsenal (14/2)

Burnley 1-1 Southampton (2/2)

Huddersfield Town 1-2 Arsenal (9/2)

Southampton 1-1 Crystal Palace (30/1)

Manchester City 3-1 Arsenal (3/2)

Southampton 2-1 Everton (19/1)

Arsenal 2-1 Cardiff City (29/1)

Southampton 2-2 Derby County (3-5 on pens) (16/1)

Image placeholder title

Prediction


Despite Southampton beating Arsenal the last time the two teams faced each other, it looks unlikely that they will be able to repeat that feat on Sunday. 

arsenal-v-bate-borisov-uefa-europa-league-round-of-32-second-leg-5c6f20dddd4bc7249c000001.jpg

Although the Gunners are patchy away from home, they have turned the Emirates into something of a fortress under Emery, losing only once there in the Premier League this season since he became Arsenal manager.

Prediction: Arsenal 3-1 Southampton