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Leicester vs Southampton – Match Preview

09 January 2019 | Premier League | Preview
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Leicester vs Southampton – Match Preview
MDI / Shutterstock.com

Claude Puel may well be sitting seventh in the table while in charge of his Leicester side, but you get the feeling that all is not well at the King Power Stadium. Especially when you consider, that the Foxes were dumped out of the F.A. Cup at the weekend.

They suffered the biggest upset of the round as they lost to League Two Newport, a defeat that would have only reignited the ‘Puel Out’ movement which is beginning to take shape in the East Midlands.

And it is a feeling that Puel himself will know all to well as it was a similar set of circumstances that led to him being shown the exit door at his previous employers Southampton. As Saints manger he not only led them to an an eighth place finish, but also an EFL Cup Final where they lost to Manchester United at Wembley.

What let him down at St Mary’s and what also might end up being the case at his current job is the fact that the football his sides play isn’t deemed attractive enough for meaningful long-term employment.

The only way that Puel can remedy this is by making sure that Leicester hang onto the current seventh place that they find themselves in, something that could well end up offering the club a return back to Europe.

If he is to achieve that feat and in turn increase his chances of staying in the Leicester hotseat, then he will need to keep getting points and more importantly wins on the board and who does he go up against this weekend? His former club Southampton.

They though are the perfect example of the fact that the grass is not always greener on the other side, as since the sacking of Puel back in 2017 they have subsequently named three different managers.

However, after much turmoil it looks as if Southampton have finally found the right man in charge with former RB Leipzig manager Ralph Hasenhuttl now at the helm and although the Saints are still in the bottom three at present there is a real air of positivity around the club.

Something that has certainly been fostered after a number of impressive results, as they were the team that ended Arsenal’s impressive unbeaten run thanks to a 3-2 home win and in their last outing, they held Chelsea to a goalless draw at Stamford Bridge.

Although it seems as if small steps are being made under Hasenhuttl, you do get the feeling that they almost need to be giant strides. Draws simply won’t be enough to keep them up, they have to start winning with more regularity.

At the same time, they will be confident that they can use the draw against Chelsea as a launchpad for more positive results, something that they could find themselves getting against a Leicester side that has a habit of blowing hot and cold.

Claude Puel would love to get a win, not only to return to winning ways after such a miserable cup defeat but also to get one over his former employers. However, he may well have to end up with the honours being even this time around in what will be a hard fought 90 minutes.

Predictions for Premier League

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BrightonSouthampton
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BurnleyWolverhampton
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OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
1. Liverpool 76 31 23 7 1 70 18 52
2. Manchester City 74 30 24 2 4 79 21 58
3. Tottenham 61 30 20 1 9 57 32 25
4. Arsenal 60 30 18 6 6 63 39 24
5. Manchester United 58 30 17 7 6 58 40 18
6. Chelsea 57 30 17 6 7 50 33 17
7. Wolverhampton 44 30 12 8 10 38 36 2
8. Watford 43 30 12 7 11 42 44 -2
9. West Ham 42 31 12 6 13 41 46 -5
10. Leicester City 41 31 12 5 14 40 43 -3
11. Everton 40 31 11 7 13 43 42 1
12. Bournemouth 38 31 11 5 15 43 56 -13
13. Newcastle United 35 31 9 8 14 31 40 -9
14. Crystal Palace 33 30 9 6 15 36 41 -5
15. Brighton 33 29 9 6 14 32 42 -10
16. Southampton 30 30 7 9 14 34 50 -16
17. Burnley 30 31 8 6 17 35 59 -24
18. Cardiff City 28 30 8 4 18 27 57 -30
19. Fulham 17 31 4 5 22 29 70 -41
20. Huddersfield 14 31 3 5 23 18 57 -39

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