Norwich - Southampton Preview: Visitors look to bounce back from shock QPR defeat
After their survival campaign was derailed by the unexpected loss, the Saints are in desperate need of a result against a Canaries side looking to steer further away from danger
By Alex Ward
Martin, Turner, Bassong, Garrido
Snodgrass, Hoolahan, Pilkington
Clyne, Yoshida, Fonte, Shaw
Puncheon, Cork, Schneiderlin, Lallana
Chris Hughton will look to get back on track after his side's crushing 4-0 defeat at Old Trafford on Saturday and will hope to capitalise on Norwich's solid home form at a ground that witnessed victory over high-flying Everton last time out.
The hero of that particular triumph, Kei Kamara, may be handed his first start in place of fellow recent arrival Luciano Becchio as Hughton looks to buttress his side's attacking potency.
The clash comes too early for Alex Tettey, however, who remains sidelined through a knee injury, whilst midfielder Andrew Surman will miss the chance to face his former club after undergoing minor surgery on an ongoing knee complaint.
The Canaries will continue to be without long-term absentee John Ruddy, although the goalkeeper is pencilled in for a return later this month.
Southampton are likely to field a similar team to the side that ignominiously lost to QPR on Saturday, but with the likely exception of Danny Fox, who is expected to make way for the returning Luke Shaw after sustaining a knock at the weekend.
However, Mauro Pocettino could receive a notable boost after Adam Lallana's speedy recovery from a concussion sustained against QPR, who returned to training in mid-week.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
- There have been a total of 27 goals in the two club's previous six top-flight encounters, an average of 4.5 per game.
- Norwich have claimed 25 of their 32 points (78 per cent) at Carrow Road this season, having won just once away from home in a 4-3 thriller at Swansea.
- Chris Hughton’s side have taken 10 points against the current top-six sides at Carrow Road this term.
- The Canaries have netted just three times in their last five home games, with two of those goals coming against Everton last time out.
- Only Grant Holt and Robert Snodgass (pictured right) have scored more than four times for the Canaries.
- Southampton target men Rickie Lambert and Grant Holt will be no stranger to one another, having played together at Rochdale in League Two between 2004-06.
- Lambert is currently the top-scoring Englishman in the Premier League this term with 12 goals, more than double the Saints' second-highest scorer, Jason Puncheon.
- Southampton have tasted victory just once in their last seven Premier League outings.
- Saints' have thrown away a staggering 27 points from winning positions this season, more than any other side.
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Top 3 Predictions
Norwich City 2-1 Southampton
- 20.64 %
Norwich City 1-1 Southampton
- 15.34 %
Norwich City 2-0 Southampton
- 9.52 %
|Premier League (EPL)||31 Aug 2013||Norwich City 1 - Southampton 0|
|Premier League (EPL)||9 Mar 2013||Norwich City 0 - Southampton 0|
|Premier League (EPL)||28 Nov 2012||Southampton 1 - Norwich City 1|
|8 Mar 2014||Norwich City 1 - Stoke City 1||EPL|
|2 Mar 2014||Aston Villa 4 - Norwich City 1||EPL|
|23 Feb 2014||Norwich City 1 - Tottenham 0||EPL|
|11 Feb 2014||West Ham 2 - Norwich City 0||EPL|
|8 Feb 2014||Norwich City 0 - Manchester City 0||EPL|
|6||Jose Rocha Fonte||Defender|
|21||Guilherme Do Prado||Midfielder|
The Scotland international has been a thorn in the side of many a left-back this season with his mazy trickery and accomplished dead-ball delivery. In fact, no player has netted more direct free kicks than Snodgrass, who curled in a set-piece equaliser in the reverse fixture at St Marys.
Puncheon has been a continuing source of vibrancy on the right flank for Southampton this term and brings an essential modicum of consistency to an otherwise sporadic side. His darting, powerful runs and keen eye for goal have seen the winger score six goals this season, and he will be looking to celebrate his new deal at the club with a solid performance at Carrow Road.
This is a crunch clash for both sides. For the hosts, a victory would render their survival prospects all but secured, whilst a loss would leave them on the fringes of the relegation dogfight. For the visitors, a positive result is imperative; another loss against bottom-half opposition would put them squarely in a battle with a bleak, downward trajectory. Regardless, the clash promises goals, with a solid Norwich team meeting an outfit that has conceded at least twice in their previous four outings.
Times In BST
Live Final scheduled Suspended Cancelled Postponed