Often Partisan

When the Saints go marching in: Southampton Preview

Today sees Nigel Adkins’ Southampton side visit Birmingham City as Blues look to extend their amazing sequence of results. The Saints are currently in the second automatic promotion slot and will be one of the teams Blues need to overhaul if they’re to go up at the first time of asking without the lottery of the playoffs.

Southampton FC

After a barnstorming start to the season Saints have tailed off a bit of late and find themselves now only two places and five points ahead of Birmingham City, having played one game more. Whilst Southampton’s home record is outstanding, they’ve only taken 16 points from 39 on their travels and in their last six league games they’ve only taken seven points. If ever there was a time to chase down a promotion rival, this is it.

Billy Sharp could well make his debut after his move from Doncaster Rovers, but Southampton have injury worries with Hooiveld, de Ridder, Guly de Prado and Chaplow all missing this game. It will be interesting how Billy Sharp fits into the top scoring team in the Championship, and how he partners up with Rickie Lambert as sometimes it takes a while for a partnership to click.

Birmingham City

Blues are in the form of their lives, having won five on the spin in all competitions, unbeaten in ten and taken sixteen points from their last eighteen. Throw in the 21 goals they scored in January, and the fact they’ve conceded just three and you’ve got a team that is figuratively on fire.

Blues welcome back to the squad Marlon King after he missed the Leeds game through injury whilst its hoped Nikola Zigic has recovered after hurting himself scoring his fourth goal against Leeds. Guirane N’Daw is back with the team after Senegal’s early exit from the Africa Cup of Nations but may face a struggle to get back into the side bearing in mind the performances of Mutch and Fahey recently. I would think Nathan Redmond and Wade Elliott will be contesting the left flank spot, and provided Zigic is fit I can see Blues will start with two up top.

I keep saying this, but this is going to be a tough fixture for Blues, and if we get a draw we’ve probably done okay. A win however would see us close the gap to Southampton to two with that game in hand still in place – and surely would alert other teams to the St Andrews juggernaut which has been flattening teams on its way up the table. The match is live on Sky Sports, kick off 5:20 – and although I don’t want to sound like an overbearing mother hen, it’s going to be cold – wrap up warm people.

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4 Responses to “When the Saints go marching in: Southampton Preview”

  • bluenose08 says:

    I agree this is going to be a tough game and we are going to need to start at a high tempo and take the game to them as of late we have been taking time to get into the game. Lets hope the weather stays ok and we can pick up 3pts.
    k.r.o.

  • Oby says:

    Come on you Bluuuueeeees !!

  • parkp says:

    I thought Sheff Utd and Leeds were gonna be tough to crack but we scored 4 on each occasion. Southampton? Yes another tough nut to crack. Come on you Blues!

  • jeff says:

    southampton have had the bulk of their team a while now.it shows that if you keep a team together long enough it will/should gell.on our day we are better.i think if the weather dosn,t hamper us too much we will win


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