How Southampton must line up when they face Newcastle on Saturday
Southampton will look to boost their Premier League survival chances when they face Newcastle United in a potentially season-defining clash at St James’ Park on Saturday.
The Saints had the chance to move clear of the relegation zone when they faced fellow strugglers Stoke City at St Mary’s last weekend, but they failed to make a breakthrough against the Potters in a goalless draw that has left them just one point above the bottom three and with the supporters desperate for manager Mauricio Pellegrino to go.
The south coast outfit are in real danger of dropping down to the Championship having only won five of their 29 top flight matches this term, and the match on Tyneside is the first of three successive away league games for them, although they will take some solace from the fact that Rafa Benitez’s side have the third worst home record in the Premier League.
Pellegrino will know that it is getting to the stage of the campaign where a draw against Newcastle won’t be enough for him and his players, and he may well need to consider changing up the 4-2-3-1 formation he has primarily used since he succeeded Claude Puel last summer.
The Argentine boss made one change from the side that secured a 1-1 draw against Burnley for the game against Stoke last time out, but he could perhaps choose to make some more against the Magpies following another unconvincing display from his team.
Here is how Southampton must line up against Newcastle on Saturday, ahead of Alex McCarthy in goal…