Two big changes Pellegrino must make to his Southampton XI vs Newcastle

Southampton will look to boost their Premier League survival bid in a potentially season-defining clash against Newcastle United at St James’ Park on Saturday, on the back of a disappointing goalless draw against fellow strugglers Stoke City at St Mary’s last weekend.

The south coast outfit would have seen the match against the Potters as a must-win considering they only had three home games left this season after that one – with two of those against Chelsea and Manchester City – but they failed to make the breakthrough against Paul Lambert’s men which increased the pressure on manager Mauricio Pellegrino.

Saints have now not beaten any of their relegation rivals Stoke, Newcastle, Swansea City, Crystal Palace, Huddersfield Town and Brighton and Hove Albion on their own patch this term, and they will now likely be relying on results on the road to save them.

They lie just one place and one point above the relegation zone and one point behind the 16th-placed Magpies ahead of their fixture on Tyneside on Saturday, and they can certainly take some solace from the fact that the hosts have the third worst home record in the top flight.

Pellegrino will be considering making some changes to the XI that drew against Stoke given they didn’t get the three points they needed, and the Argentine boss will regret it if he fails to make a couple of important alterations to his team.

Here are two big changes the 46-year-old must make to his Southampton side when they face Newcastle…