Premier League: Saints host Bournemouth in south coast derby
Lee Gormley | October 30, 2015
Southampton v Bournemouth
- Premier League
- Sunday, November 1st
- Kick-off: 16:00 GMT
- St Mary’s Stadium, Southampton, Hampshire
- Live on Sky Sports 1
Southampton seek victory in Cherries clash
Southampton will collide with neighbours Bournemouth for the first time ever in the Premier League for an intriguing south cost derby, with the hosts having never been toppled on home soil by their close rivals in six previous domestic meetings.
The two south coast sides could not come into this clash in more contrasting form, with Eddie Howe’s visiting Cherries stuttering just two points above the relegation zone, while Ronald Koeman’s Saints sit in eighth-place, close to a European position.
It’s Southampton that have emerged victorious in the last three competitive meetings with their neighbours since 2010, with the Cherries’ previous win coming back in 1987, but they are 11/2 with Coral to cause an upset this time out at St Mary’s.
Saints can continue domestic march
The hosts are massive odds-on 4/7 favourites for victory over a Bournemouth outfit that have haplessly won just one of their previous seven domestic league games, losing out four times and drawing on two occasions.
Bournemouth also suffered a recent Capital One Cup exit at the hands of Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool, while the Saints overcame Aston Villa in their respective cup clash. Southampton will not only take confidence from their League Cup coup, but from their impressive league form too, having now gone unbeaten in four outings.
Pelle and Mane to star again?
Italy international marksman Graziano Pelle and club teammate Saido Mane have been pivotal to any Southampton success so far this term, having impressively dispatched 11 goals between them.
Now, against the division’s joint-worst defensive set-up in Bournemouth, the prolific pair could once again blossom on home turf, as Koeman seeks a drive further up the top-flight table.
Pelle is 7/2 to open proceedings, after netting 10 strikes for club and country this term, while Mane is 4/1 to net last. The latter wideman has been directly involved in seven Saints goals this season and should be a key danger to Howe’s struggling Cherries.
Howe holds hope
Bournemouth made history by securing their first ever Premier League promotion last season, but they now face a daunting and challenging survival battle after stuttering form under Englishman Howe.
Despite being overcome by Klopp’s Reds last time out in the cup, Howe believes his side performed potently in defeat and has taken positives ahead of their Southampton match-up.
“We created some good chances first half. We were very good at times in both halves. In the first half though we had that cutting edge and their goalkeeper made some good saves,” said the Cherries coach.
“Some of our passing and build-up play was good, and the only thing missing was the goal. The positive is the goal didn’t affect us and we grew into the game.
“We’re never happy because we’ve been beaten, and we don’t want to get used to losing, but certainly reflecting on the last two or three games, this was a positive step.”
Arter can help Cherries blossom
The return of Republic of Ireland international Harry Arter is a massive boost to Bournemouth ahead their Saints clash, having made a comeback from injury, and he is 15/2 to net anytime in this south coast derby.
“He was very motivated, which you would expect given that he had a long time out, and the normal Harry Arter played [against Liverpool], so that was a good thing,” continued Howe.
“He is a key part of our squad so to get him back boosts not just the club but the players as well as he is a big personality within the squad.”
Another positive for the visitors is that they have managed to score in each of their previous eight Premier League matches, giving them a fighting chance of stunning Southampton, and they are 10/1 to win with both teams getting on the scoresheet.