Southampton v Manchester City
Premier League - Sunday, May 13th, 3.00 pm BST
Southampton’s 1 – 0 win at Swansea during the week has put them into the enviable position where they can lose and remain a Premier League club.
Only a nine-goal swing with Swansea winning can change that. While Manchester City can be rampant, the Swans being that ruthless seems unlikely with the proviso that they are playing the already relegated Stoke City at the Liberty Stadium.
It’s a fixture which City have dominated in recent years and are expected to do so once again at St Mary’s. In the past ten meetings in the Premier League, City registered six wins and a draw while at Southampton, it’s been a more even contest. Southampton winning three with three draws in the last ten.
Goals are rarely in short supply; four of the last five on the south coast saw over 2.5 goals, with three registering 3.5 goals or more.
The celebrations at the final whistle at the Liberty Stadium offered a stark contrast to Swansea’s despair. Manolo Gabbiadini’s goal extended the Saints run to four unbeaten in the Premier League (W2, D2), with only one of those games at home.
Which is probably just as well given the Saints have one win in the last ten at St Mary’s (D5, L4). Their form against the top seven is not good; two draws and four defeats against teams who have trailed in City’s slipstream all season.
It’s a formidable problem for Mark Hughes team to face and they are relieved to do so with a cushion.
Steven Davis and Jan Bednarek are both out through injury while Sofiane Boufal is out of favour with Mark Hughes. Mario Lemina is expected to be fit while Maya Yoshida is available after suspension.
The title wrapped up, City round off an impressive season with a chance to become the first team to reach 100 points in the Premier League era.
They come into the game with four wins out of five, only the home draw with Huddersfield to prick the otherwise perfect record. It was also the only game from the last seven in the Premier League to feature less than 3.5 goals.
Away from home, City have scored two or more in the last five, registering three or more on four occasions. They have conceded under 1.5 goals in those matches and kept two clean sheets.
Only Sergio Aguero misses the game through injury while David Silva may not be available after returning to Spain for family reasons. Otherwise Pep Guardiola has a full squad to call upon.
City can make this a nervous afternoon for the Saints with an early goal. Follow that with another and Southampton are going to be filled with nervous tension.
It’s an intriguing fixture for them because City are unpicking defences at will this season. Southampton cannot relax into the match, knowing they are not entirely out of the woods. The cushion of the midweek victory may well be their only saving grace.
Team to Win to Nill Betting Tip, Manchester City @ odds of 2.50
Half Time / Full Time Betting Tip, Manchester City @ odds of 1.95
Asian Handicap Betting Tip, -1.5 Manchester City @ odds of 2.02
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