Leicester City 7th (9-4-8) vs Southampton 18th (3-7-11)
Live from the King Power Stadium on Saturday at 10 AM ET on NBC Sports Gold
While Leicester slipped on a banana peel out of the FA Cup, Southampton fared slightly better by blowing a two goal lead to Derby County. They both restart their campaign with two matches to come before the international break with both needing positive results from this game.
Nathan Redmond was the star of their game against Derby, scoring a brace and his first goals since their 2-1 loss to West Ham. New manager Ralph Hasenhüttl will hope to get the best out of Redmond in the coming days because he could be the key to keeping them up, or their inevitable spiral into the Championship.
How has Ralph done so far in the League? Short answer, okay. With 3 loses, 2 wins, and 1 draw is not a bad start. Their big win over Arsenal shocked the league and they followed it up with a victory over Huddersfield, but then lost 2-1 to West Ham, 3-1 to Manchester City, and managed a 0-0 against Chelsea. While a loss to Leicester won’t see them down at the bottom of the table, but if that trend continued to the 4 of their 6 upcoming matches with teams around them, they could be in huge danger.
I for one am not up in arms about Leicester’s loss in the FA Cup to Newport County. All this talk about how Claude Puel fielded a weak side and doesn’t care about the cup is total garbage. Manchester City was the only side to field more Premier League champions (8) than Leicester (6) in the whole third round. You had a Champions League goalscorer in Marc Albrighton. A World Cup striker for Nigeria in Kelechi Iheanacho, and another for Japan in Shinji Okazaki. They took 24 shots and managed only 8 on target and just lacked a sense of urgency and desire to really put Newport away in the end.
Claude Puel is always up for this match, for obvious reasons. I think Leicester will want to put in a performance to shake off that FA Cup result. I expect the Saints to be on the attack and look for Leicester to get in behind them and hit them on the counter. Leicester win 3-1.