Despite narrowly escaping the third successive defeat, Southampton find themselves in a difficult situation, meaning they have got to try and take all three points from this match. That will be no easy task given that Liverpool are playing great football at the moment and hoping to extend their winning run to five games at St Mary’s.
Before the season started, Southampton were not given big chances to avoid a straight return to the Championship, but the team prove the doubters wrong by playing some very good football after their managed to recover from the slow start to the league campaign. Just as the team started to climb the Premier League standings, the club chiefs made a surprising decision to sack coach Nigel Adkins, with new boss Mauricio Pochettino going on to win just one of his first eight matches in charge. This has seen the Saints slip back to the danger zone, and they now appear to be in all sorts of problems. After losing to both Newcastle and QPR, Southampton managed to bring one point from Norwich after Artur Boruc managed to save an injury-time penalty, but with the team clearly struggling for form, matching high-flying Liverpool is likely to prove a very difficult task.
Liverpool were always going to need some time to gel after Brendan Rodgers and a number of new players arrived at Anfield in the summer, and just when everybody started to write the off, the Reds managed to get their season back on track. This has mostly to do with January signings Daniel Sturridge, who have been absolutely brilliant since arriving at the club, but Steven Gerrard and magnificent Luis Suarez certainly played their part. The Reds have looked so good of late that even Stuart Downing is starting to look like a true England international, with four straight victories in all competitions acting as a huge confidence boost for the players. After scoring three first-half goals in their last away fixture against Wigan, I see a great value in backing the Reds to win this at St Mary’s.