Match Preview: Leicester vs Saints

By SFC Media Wed 18 Apr Leicester v Saints

Get game ready for Thursday night's trip to the King Power Stadium with our match preview...

THE MATCH

Leicester City vs Southampton
Thursday 19th April, 7:45pm BST
King Power Stadium
Premier League

WHAT’S AT STAKE?

Improved performances against Arsenal and Chelsea will have heartened Saints boss Mark Hughes even if the results did not.

The fact that his team were in positions to go on and win both of those matches provide both reason for promise and a sign of what needs to be corrected ahead of a trip to Leicester.

Dušan Tadić, James Ward-Prowse and Ryan Bertrand celebrate Saturday's opening goal.

As the Welshman has said himself, points on the board are what matter at this stage of the season particularly given the fact that rivals Crystal Palace, Huddersfield Town and Swansea all took advantage of Chelsea’s late comeback at St Mary’s.

A disappointing run of results for Claude Puel’s Foxes meanwhile has allowed Burnley to make seventh place – which may yield a Europa League spot – their own in recent weeks while also bringing an end to knockout runs in both the FA and Carabao cup at the quarter-final stage.

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Inside Track: Leicester

Puel’s men have lost consecutive home matches just once this season; that came back in September against Chelsea and Liverpool.

TEAM NEWS

Leicester: Late calls are expected to be made on Kasper Schmeichel and Shinji Okazaki. Of the two, the Japanese striker is more likely to fit in time for Thursday night with keeper Schmeichel yet to train with the squad this week.

Southampton: The big news for Saints is that club captain Steven Davis is set to feature in the matchday squad for the first time since mid-February.

Davis’s return to action had been postponed after failing a late fitness test ahead of the 3-2 defeat at the Emirates Stadium but the Northern Irishman will be hopeful of contributing at the King Power Stadium.

Missing out however will be Mario Lemina and Sofiane Boufal due to a back issue and illness respectively.

FORM GUIDE

Leicester's previous five:

Burnley (a) L 2-1
Newcastle (h) L 2-1
Chelsea (h) L 2-1 AET (FA Cup)
West Brom (a) W 1-4 
Leicester (h) D 1-1

Southampton’s previous five:

Chelsea (h) L 3-2
Arsenal (a) L 3-2
West Ham (a) L 3-0 
Wigan (a) W 2-0 (FA Cup)
Newcastle (a) L 3-0

KEY MEN

The first-half performance against Chelsea was perhaps one of the best Saints have produced this season and central to that was the impact of Dušan Tadić.

No one in red and white stripes has created and scored more goals than the Serbian since his debut (45) and his coolly taken finish from Ryan Bertrand’s surging run and cross was just reward for his early menace down the left.

Jan Bednarek – Saints’ other scorer in that game – will be confident of maintaining his place in the side to make the second Premier League appearance of his career. The Pole finished superbly at the back post from James Ward-Prowse’s free-kick and was quietly effective in possession from deep.


Top scorers: Charlie Austin (7), Dušan Tadić (4) James Ward-Prowse (4) Steven Davis, Jack Stephens, Manolo Gabbiadini (all 3)

Most assists: Ryan Bertrand (4), Nathan Redmond, Dušan Tadić, James Ward-Prowse (all 3)

When it comes to dangermen, few pairings will spring to mind as quickly as Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez. While the latter has not quite reached the same heights he achieved in his team’s title-winning season, when the Algerian in song, Leicester can often be very difficult to stop.

The same can be said of frontman Vardy who has 20 goals to his name this season, climbing into the Foxes’ all-time top 10 scorers in the process this week.

Top scorers: Jamie Vardy (20), Riyad Mahrez (11), Shinji Okazaki (7), Kelechi Iheanacho (6)

Most assists: Riyad Mahrez (8), Mark Albrighton (7), Harry Maguire (4), Kelechi Iheanacho (4)


PREVIOUS MEETINGS

All-time record:

Played: 85
Southampton: 32
Draws: 27
Leicester City: 26

Previous five meetings:

December 2017: Southampton 1-4 Leicester
Jan 2017: Southampton 3-0 Leicester 
Oct 2016: Leicester 0-0 Southampton
April 2016: Leicester 1-0 Southampton
Oct 2016: Southampton 2-2 Leicester

DID YOU KNOW? 

Saints have kept a clean sheet in their last three Thursday Premier League games, winning the last two in a row, most recently against Arsenal in January 2015 (2-0).

Leicester have not done the Premier League double over Southampton since the 1999-00 campaign.


NOT AT THE GAME?

Not able to make it to Leicester on Thursday night? We’ll be with you every step of the way on our interactive match centre at southamptonfc.com, where we will have all the build-up, as well as in-game updates and free live audio commentary.

Additionally, be sure to follow us on our various social channels for behind-the-scenes access and further updates. 

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