Southampton-Leicester City Preview

Southampton are set to be without a number of key players for Saturday's trip to Leicester City, yet Ralph Hasenhuttl is unconcerned if he has to rely on inexperience.

With their FA Cup game against Shrewsbury Town having been postponed, the Saints have not played since they beat Liverpool on January 4.

However, Danny Ings is likely to miss the game after he tested positive for COVID-19, while Nathan Redmond, Moussa Djenepo, Jannik Vestergaard and Oriol Romeu also set to be out.

Hasenhuttl, though, has no issue with calling on his younger players if needed.

"It was important that we stepped good in the week, with intense work on the pitch, with a lot of young players involved in the sessions," he said.

"They must immediately show up and help us get high quality in the sessions and then hopefully we find the right eleven for the weekend.

"With a few injuries we have at the moment in a few positions, the chance is big that also young players get a chance from the beginning. So we have some issues because of the intense time we had over Christmas, and now we must find a squad that is competitive."

Fourth-placed Leicester have had injuries of their own. Cengiz Under and Ricardo Pereira have both been sidelined, yet Brendan Rodgers suggested they could be in line to feature.

"Cengo (Under) should be back with us this weekend, which is great news. Pereira, also, so that's great for us. Probably a bit like Caglar Soyuncu, we just need to get him back step by step.

"We don't need to rush it. He's working hard with the medical team. He's gone through all the tests and all the measures. He's been out and trained with the squad for a little while."

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Leicester City - Youri Tielemans

Tielemans completed a game-high 67 passes in Leicester's 4-0 win at Stoke City in the FA Cup, assisting the Foxes' second goal. Winning the midfield battle could be key against Southampton, and the Belgian could prove to be the main creative outlet.

Southampton - James Ward-Prowse

With so many players out, Ward-Prowse will be the main driving force for the visitors. All four of his assists this season have come from set-pieces.

KEY OPTA FACTS

•All five of Leicester striker Jamie Vardy's Premier League goals against Southampton have been scored away from home - in six home appearances, he has only managed seven shots and three on target against Saints.

•Southampton are looking to keep four consecutive Premier League clean sheets for the first time since a run of six in January/February 2016. Saints have kept eight clean sheets in 17 Premier League games this season, just one fewer than they kept in 38 games last term.

•Just 31 per cent of Leicester's Premier League points this season have been won in home games, the lowest ratio in the division. The Foxes have lost four of their eight home league games so far this term (W3 D1).

•The away team has won the last four Premier League matches between Leicester and Southampton, with the last home win in this fixture back in January 2017 (3-0 Saints). The last Premier League fixture to see five consecutive away wins was Crystal Palace vs Liverpool between May 2015 and April 2017.

•Leicester have lost their last two home Premier League matches against Southampton, one more than they did in their first 12 home games against Saints in the competition (W7 D4).