Southampton face the long trip up to Old Trafford this weekend as they face Manchester United in their final fixture of 2017.
Both sides come into the game in mixed form in the Premier League. The Saints have picked up just two points from their last five matches whilst United have won just one of their last five matches in the Premier League.
Southampton will be looking to respond from an atrocious performance on Boxing Day when they went down 5-2 to Tottenham at Wembley.
As for United, they came back from 2-0 down to claim a 2-2 draw with Burnley last time out, but have looked a long way off their best in the past few weeks.
As for Saints, things haven’t been going too well and they lie just two points above the drop zone in 14th place. The need for points at the weekend has never been greater.
The Saints’ away form is very concerning, with them picking up just one win on their travels this season which came against a struggling Crystal Palace side.
As you’d expect, United’s form at Old Trafford this season has been brilliant. They have picked up 25 points in front of their supporters and only Manchester City have beaten them this season at home.
The most recent match between the two came in September, when United claimed a 1-0 win at St Mary’s Stadium – a match in which Romelu Lukaku scored the only goal.
In terms of team news, Saints remain without first choice full-backs Ryan Bertrand and Cedric Soares as the pair work their way back from respective hamstring and ankle injuries. They have both missed the past two matches in the league. Elsewhere, Charlie Austin remains out with a long-term injury which was picked up against Huddersfield. He is also serving the second game of his three-match ban.
As for the hosts, Eric Bailly, Marouane Fellani and Michael Carrick will all miss this one as they continue their rehab from long-term injuries. Defender Chris Smalling has been ruled out of the visit of the Saints as he recovers from a groin strain picked up in the draw with Leicester City. Matteo Darmian and Antony Martial have both trained ahead of the visit of Saints and could be involved. Antonio Valencia wont feature as he tries to work his way back from a hamstring injury.
I think that the hosts will dominate much of the ball in this one and will struggle to break a resolute Saints down for large parts; they could be in for a very frustrating evening in front of their supporters.
I think that Saints will be able to pick up a 1-1 draw against Manchester United.