Preview: Southampton vs. Brentford – Prediction, Team News, Lineups
Southampton vs. Brentford. Fresh from booking their spots in the fourth round of the FA Cup, Southampton and Brentford reconvene for Premier League action at St Mary’s on Tuesday night.
The Saints saw off Swansea City 3-2 after extra time at the weekend, while Thomas Frank’s side ran out convincing 4-1 winners over Port Vale.
In spite of Yan Valery’s sending off within only 30 minutes of the contest – which highlighted the right-back’s inexperience according to Ralph Hasenhuttl – the 10 men of Southampton ultimately ploughed through to dump Swansea out of the FA Cup on Saturday.
Only Nathan Redmond and Joel Piroe made the net ripple within the first 90 minutes, and Swansea took a 2-1 lead in the 94th minute via Jan Bednarek’s own goal, but Mohamed Elyounoussi and the forgotten man Shane Long ensured that the day was Southampton’s at the Liberty Stadium.
Southampton will learn the fate of their fourth-round opponents later on Sunday, but attention now turns to their first Premier League game of 2022, and Hasenhuttl can take some confidence from the fact that his side went unbeaten in their last three top-flight games of 2021.
However, a streak of results including one win and four draws from their last eight in the Premier League has left Southampton continuing to look over their shoulder, as the 14th-placed Saints are 10 points clear of 18th-placed Burnley having played two games more.
Southampton’s resilience on home soil has seen them string together a six-game unbeaten streak at St Mary’s in the Premier League – although they have drawn a league-high six on familiar territory this term – and Brentford are certainly no pushovers.
While Southampton needed 120 minutes to make it past their lower-league opposition at the weekend, Brentford had no such difficulties, as Bryan Mbeumo produced quite the substitute cameo to help see off Port Vale by four goals to one.
Marcus Forss’s 28th-minute strike ensured that the Bees would take a slender lead into the half-time interval, but Mbeumo would take just 25 minutes to complete his hat-trick after being introduced just after the hour mark, with Kian Harratt bagging a consolation for Port Vale.
Mbeumo will certainly hope to see his three-goal showing at Vale Park translate into better fortunes in the Premier League, with Brentford currently sat in 12th place – two spots and two points better off than their upcoming opponents.
Frank’s men opened their Premier League account for 2022 with a smash-and-grab victory over Aston Villa, but results away from home have been hard to come by, as Brentford have failed to win any of their last five top-flight matches on the road – conceding at least two goals on each occasion.
This tie was originally meant to take place in December before a COVID-19 outbreak ravaged the Brentford squad, but the Bees managed to claim a 2-0 win at St Mary’s in the second round of last season’s EFL Cup.
Southampton Premier League form:
Southampton form (all competitions):
Brentford Premier League form:
Brentford form (all competitions):
Southampton are in a bit of a predicament at right-back following Valery’s red card and subsequent suspension, with Valentino Livramento still struggling with a knee injury and Kyle Walker-Peters testing positive for coronavirus.
Mohammed Salisu is back from a ban of his own and could fill in if necessary, but Moussa Djenepo is away on Africa Cup of Nations duty, and Will Smallbone, Alex McCarthy and Thierry Small are all absentee concerns for Hasenhuttl.
Long’s winner at the weekend is unlikely to see him rewarded with a starting role at St Mary’s, but Adam Armstrong will expect to have a strong chance of returning up top alongside Che Adams, who has recovered from COVID-19.
As for Brentford, centre-back Kristoffer Ajer lasted just over an hour on his comeback from injury and came out unscathed, but Frank is without Frank Onyeka due to AFCON.
David Raya, Charlie Goode, Mathias Jorgensen, Josh Dasilva and Julian Jeanvier remain sidelined due to injury, but Frank is confident that Sergi Canos and Mathias Jensen will both be fit to play.
There is a bit more doubt over the availability of Rico Henry, but Aston Villa hero Mads Roerslev – who bagged a goal and assist against the Lions – will not concede his place easily either way.
Southampton possible starting lineup:
Forster; Salisu, Bednarek, Stephens, Perraud; Redmond, Ward-Prowse, Romeu, Elyounoussi; A. Armstrong, Broja
Brentford possible starting lineup:
Fernandez; Ajer, Jansson, Pinnock; Canos, Norgaard, Baptiste, Jensen, Roerslev; Mbeumo, Toney
BABOYO says: Southampton vs. Brentford -> Over 1.5
Southampton’s solid home form coupled with Brentford’s dire set of recent results on the road certainly points towards a Saints win, but Hasenhuttl’s side have developed an affinity for stalemates.
With the Bees boasting several more first-XI regulars well-rested from the weekend and Mbeumo seeking to kick on after his FA Cup hat-trick, we see another high-scoring encounter ending with the spoils shared at St Mary’s.
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Source: Sports Mole.