After the disappointing draw against Fulham on Boxing Day, Southampton will be looking to get back to winning ways as they face West Ham at St Mary’s on Tuesday evening.
Ralph Hasenhuttl is boosted by the news that Oriol Romeu is back from suspension, although Ibrahima Diallo deputised well on what was his first Premier League start at Craven Cottage.
Unfortunately for the Saints, Danny Ings, Nathan Redmond and Jannik Vestergaard are all likely to miss out through injury, meaning that the South Coast club will be far from full strength for the game against David Moyes’ side.
Here’s how we expect the Austrian manager to line his side up against West Ham, with two changes from the side that started on Boxing Day…
Whilst Southampton’s attacking play was not up to its usual standard against Fulham, the defence did an excellent job in cleaning a clean sheet, with Jack Stephens filling in well for Vestergaard, so it seems likely that Hasenhuttl will stick with the same back five.
Mohammed Salisu is no doubt pushing for his first appearance in a Saints shirt, however, so he could fill in for Stephens or Bednarek if the Austrian manager opts to rest either of his centre-backs against West Ham.
The first of two changes in midfield sees Romeu return in place of Diallo, with the Spanish midfielder having been superb in the Premier League so far this season, having averaged an impressive 7.09 rating across his 14 appearances in the top-flight.
Meanwhile, Moussa Djenepo comes in for Shane Long, with Theo Walcott moving up front. The £60k per week striker was rarely involved against Fulham, and Djenepo’s trickery could be key in unlocking the West Ham defence.
Che Adams partners the former Arsenal man up front, and they will have to be on top form if the Saints are to pick up three points on Tuesday, with the Hammers having started the season in impressive fashion.
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