After progressing past Shrewsbury Town in the FA Cup third round earlier this week, Ralph Hasenhuttl’s side are back in cup action this weekend, as they face Arsenal at St Mary’s.
The Austrian manager is suffering an injury crisis at the South Coast club at the moment, with first-team regulars Jannik Vestergaard, Nathan Redmond, Oriol Romeu and Moussa Djenepo all ruled out.
However, the Saints have been boosted by the news that Danny Ings can return to action against the Gunners, after missing recent fixtures after testing positive for the current viral outbreak.
Whilst the Southampton youngsters impressed against Shrewsbury, Arsenal are a very different kettle of fish, so it seems likely that Hasenhuttl will make plenty of changes ahead of Saturday’s early kick-off.
Here’s how Football FanCast expects Southampton to line up against Mikel Arteta’s side, with seven changes from the team that started against Shrewsbury…
Whilst Fraser Forster made it two clean sheets from two games in midweek, Hasenhuttl should restore first-choice Alex McCarthy in between the sticks to replace the £70k per week Saints ace.
There are two changes in defence, as Kyle Walker-Peters and Ryan Bertrand return in place of Jake Vokins and Yan Valery, both of whom got some much-needed minutes under their belt against the League One side.
In the absence of any senior natural left-wingers, Theo Walcott moves to the left-hand side against his old side, although he and Stuart Armstrong could switch, with the Scottish international also coming back in.
Finally, Che Adams and Danny Ings will be looking to build on their partnership from earlier in the season, although Dan N’Lundulu can be utilised from the bench if either fail to perform, after he grabbed his first goal for the club in the third-round win.
And, in other news… Semmens must cash in on 23 y/o Saints assist-king; he’s hinted he wants to leave