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Southampton predicted XI to face Crystal Palace

Southampton will be desperate to build upon last weekend’s fine result, when they managed to avoid defeat against Premier League leaders Arsenal at St Mary’s.

It marked their third game without defeat, and with a trip to Crystal Palace coning up this afternoon, it marks another decent opportunity for the Saints to continue their unbeaten run.

The Eagles were most recently thumped by Everton, but before that they had won two of their last three. With just one point separating the two teams, it is sure to be an interesting affair and tactical battle between Patrick Vieira and Ralph Hasenhuttl. 

With fresh injuries and returning players to contend with, the Austrian is expected to make two changes to his side which squeezed out a 1-1 draw against the Gunners six days ago.

In goal, Gavin Bazunu is unlikely to be displaced any time soon for the Saints, having been ever-present in the Premier League. He will sit behind an unchanged back four, with Mohammed Salisu and Duje Caleta-Car deputising for the injured Armel Bella-Kotchap at centre-back.

With Tino Livramento and Kyle Walker-Peters still ruled out, Lyanco will continue at right-back, while Romain Perraud will be hoping to keep his place on the left flank.

Should Joe Aribo be dropped?

Yes

Yes

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No

A flat four in midfield will underpin Hasenhuttl’s system, with Ainsley Maitland-Niles returning after missing out last week due to the conditions of his loan move from Arsenal.

Having been dubbed a “huge talent” last year by Gunners boss Mikel Arteta, fans on the south coast will be hoping that the 25-year-old now picks up some form and is handed a run of games to prove himself, having started only three league matches since coming to St Mary’s.

He partner James Ward-Prowse in the engine room, with Mohamed Elyounoussi and last week’s goalscorer Stuart Armstrong on the flanks.

Whilst Hasenhuttl opted for a more conservative approach last week, Joe Aribo will drop to the bench today in favour of a strike partnership of Adam Armstrong and the returning Che Adams.

The former Rangers man can offer a fine option as a substitute, but the relentlessness of this attacking duo is Southampton’s best bet at unsettling a Palace side who were harassed into a 3-0 loss at Goodison Park a week ago.

Predicted Southampton XI (4-4-2): Bazunu; Lyanco, Salisu, Caleta-Car, Perraud; Elyounoussi, Ward-Prowse, Maitland-Niles, S. Armstrong; A. Armstrong, Adams

Article title: Southampton predicted XI to face Crystal Palace

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