Southampton v Chelsea Team News
Ralph Hasenhuttl will be looking for a response from his Southampton side when they welcome Chelsea to St Mary’s for Premier League action on Sunday.
Southampton have lost their last two Premier League games, going down 3-1 at home to Bournemouth before losing 2-1 at Tottenham Hotspur last weekend, and they have won just two of their last 12 games in England’s top flight.
The Saints, who have taken seven points from seven matches this term, could lose three consecutive PL fixtures for the first time since October 2018 under Mark Hughes and, ironically, the third defeat of that run was a 3-0 loss at home against Chelsea.
Hasenhuttl has confirmed Portugal international Cedric Soares, who looked to be on his way out of the club this summer, will be absent due to injury while winger Moussa Djenepo is also unavailable as he continues to recover from a reoccurring tendon problem.
Back-up goalkeeper Alex McCarthy is expected to return to the squad following a muscular problem while striker Che Adams, a summer arrival from Birmingham City, is an option after being given a rest for that defeat to Spurs.
“This week he’s (Adams) in better condition and is clearer in the mind. He can be an option for Sunday, yes,” Hasenhuttl said at a press conference.
— Southampton FC (@SouthamptonFC) October 4, 2019
Chelsea arrive on the south cost on a three-game winning run, having defeated Grimsby Town and Brighton in the EFL Cup and Premier League respectively before overcoming Lille 2-1 in midweek for their first Champions League points of the campaign.
Tammy Abraham, who was named in England’s squad for the Euro 2020 qualifiers this month, has seven Premier League goals this season and he is expected to retain his starting place, meaning Olivier Giroud will have to watch on from the bench once more.
Defenders Emerson and Antonio Rudiger are still out along with long-term absentee Ruben Loftus-Cheek while midfielder N’Golo Kante, who returned from injury in that win over Lille, will be monitored as a precaution but is also available to play if required.