Southampton head to Yorkshire to take on Leeds in a huge Premier League encounter on Saturday. Get set for the clash with our Match Pack, in association with eToro...
Leeds United vs Saints
Saturday 25th February, 3pm GMT
Referee: Peter Bankes
Assistants: Eddie Smart, Ian Hussin
Fourth official: Jeremy Simpson
VAR: Simon Hooper
Assistant VAR: James Mainwaring
Saints will be wearing their dark green third kit for the first time since the Boxing Day trip to Fulham.
WHAT’S AT STAKE?
For both sides, it’s arguably the most important game of the season to date.
With Leeds ahead of Saints by just a single point, the landscape at the bottom of the table could alter significantly by 5pm on Saturday, with the victor potentially climbing out of the bottom three depending on results elsewhere.
Buoyed by last weekend’s stunning victory at Chelsea, Rubén Sellés will hope his impact continues having been appointed manager for the remainder of the season, ahead of facing compatriot Javi Gracia who himself was only appointed at Leeds on Tuesday.
The ‘new manager bounce’ can only fall one way in Yorkshire, but the visitors will be heading north with some positive momentum from Stamford Bridge.
Ché Adams will once again miss out, with Mislav Oršić joining him on the sidelines having suffered a concussion in training earlier this week.
Full-back Juan Larios has returned to team training, but isn’t yet ready to make the matchday squad. Sellés will also have a decision to make regarding Mohammed Salisu, who is available for selection having missed last weekend’s trip to Chelsea.
Javi Gracia faces a host of injury problems ahead of his first match in charge. Max Wober suffered a shoulder injury last weekend, while Luis Sinisterra, Pascal Struijk, Marc Roca and Archie Gray are all doubtful.
“Everybody knows the potential of this squad. The commitment, energy and passion they have is without doubt. From the first day, they have shown me these things. We just need a good result to change the dynamic.”
“I’m thinking about the game tomorrow and how I give my boys the best chance to perform. If we perform well, we will have the chance to win and that’s going to be our philosophy.
“At the end of the season, we will see if it’s enough to stay but what we need is to be proud of everything we do and that’s what we are doing.”
The 19-year-old has proven to be one of the buys of the season so far, with a string of electric displays.
With eight goal contributions to date, Saints will need to harness the teenager’s ability to get Elland Road rocking.
Saints’ skipper was the match-winner at Chelsea last weekend with a trademark free-kick, moving him to within one of David Beckham’s Premier League record.
Now just four short of his best-ever 10 goal tally achieved last season, Ward-Prowse is enjoying a more advanced role of late.
Summerville, Gnonto, Sinisterra 4
Patrick Bamford 3
Jack Harrison 7
Patrick Bamford 4
Greenwoood, Gelhardt 3
Ché Adams 9
James Ward-Prowse 8
Romain Perraud 4
Adams, Ward-Prowse, Perraud, Mara, Elyounoussi 2
Seven players 1
August 2022: Saints 2-2 Leeds (Aribo, Walker-Peters)
April 2022: Leeds 1-1 Saints (Ward-Prowse)
October 2021: Saints 1-0 Leeds (Broja)
May 2021: Saints 0-2 Leeds
February 2021: Leeds 3-0 Saints
- Southampton are the only team whose Premier League games haven't seen a single penalty goal this season. The only team to go through an entire Premier League campaign without scoring or conceding a single penalty were Crystal Palace in 1992/93.
- If he plays, this will be James Ward-Prowse's 329th Premier League game, equalling Jason Dodd for the most appearances in the competition by a Saints player. Following his goal against Chelsea last time out, Ward-Prowse (17) is just one short of David Beckham’s Premier League record for most direct free-kick goals in the competition (18).
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