JustArsenal did our first “View From our opponents” ahead of the game against Man City, and it seemed that the Citizens were very worried about their trip to the Emirates, so how confident are the Saints about facing Arsenal tonight?
This is the Preview from the official Southampton website……
SETTING THE SCENE
Southampton will be hoping to provide themselves with a Christmas boost as Arsenal visit St Mary’s on Boxing Day.
Ronald Koeman’s men have not won since their visit to Sunderland in early November, while visitors Arsenal beat title rivals Manchester City on Monday night. That victory for the Gunners made it three straight wins to keep them second in table – two points behind surprise league leaders Leicester City.
Saints meanwhile head into the Boxing Day clash sitting 12th in the table following a run of five Barclays Premier League games without a win. The latest of those was a 2-0 defeat at home to Tottenham Hotspur last weekend.
Koeman’s men can take encouragement from last season’s success against Arsene Wenger’s side. Saints won 2-1 at the Emirates in the Capital One Cup before sealing a 2-0 win at St Mary’s on New Year’s Day.
Ronald Koeman has confirmed that Maarten Stekelenburg will be available again after injury, but he has yet to make a decision on whether the Dutchman will come back in to replace Paulo Gazzaniga. Jay Rodriguez, Florin Gardos and Fraser Forster – who is back in full training – won’t be involved.
Arsenal will be without key man Alexis Sanchez, while Santi Cazorla and Francis Coquelin will also be absent at St Mary’s because of injury. Former Saints Calum Chambers, Theo Walcott and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain will all be available for Arsene Wenger.
With Alexis Sanchez out injured, Arsenal will be even more reliant on playmaker Mesut Ozil when they visit St Mary’s on Boxing Day. The German international, who joined for a club-record transfer fee in 2013, has started to show his true ability during the 2015/16 campaign. The 27 year-old has been making headlines for his impressive assist record so far this season, with two against Manchester City on Monday night making it 15 already in the Barclays Premier League this campaign. Ozil has also scored twice in his 15 league appearances to help Arsene Wenger’s side to second in the table.
Mesut Ozil has now grabbed 15 assists in the league this term. Only five players have ever managed more in a single Barclays Premier League campaign.
Olivier Giroud has scored in five of Arsenal’s last six away league matches.
Saints have never failed to win for six consecutive league matches under manager Ronald Koeman.
Arsenal have won the most top-flight points away from home in 2015 so far (28).
Southampton have lost just one of their last seven Boxing Day matches (W3 D2 L1).
Did you know?
Southampton will be looking to win successive league matches against Arsenal for the first time since April 1988, after a 2-0 win in the last meeting between the two sides back in January.
It is blindingly obvious that Southampton are in the worst run of form since Koeman arrived, so they can’t be very confident for tonight. One thing I can say is that we haven’t won in our last four visits to St Marys, so history may be against us. But the way that Arsenal has been turning history on it’s head against other top teams in 2015, I can see us ending another bad sequence at St Marys this evening….