Spurs vs Saints: Preview

By SFC Media time Sat 22 Mar Club

Saints travel to White Hart Lane on Sunday for a televised fixture on Sky Sports 1. Kick-off 1.30pm

Ahead of the weekend’s fixtures, Saints sit in eighth place, and have an opportunity to cement that ahead of Newcastle’s visit to St Mary’s a week on Saturday.

Spurs lie in fifth and have eight more points than their opponents, but recent results against the teams they have been chasing in the top four, mean that finishing anywhere above their current standing is unlikely, so they will instead be watching nervously over their shoulders.

Thursday’s defeat in the Europa League puts extra pressure on finishing in the top six for Tim Sherwood’s side whose sole victory this month has come against Premier League strugglers Cardiff.

Southampton recorded back-to-back wins in the league for the first time since the start of October with last weekend’s 4-2 victory over Norwich at St Mary’s, and will be keen to avenge December’s 3-2 defeat to Spurs in the reverse of this fixture.

The aforementioned game just before Christmas saw Saints slip to their second defeat of the season on home soil with Emmanuel Adebayor’s brace of goals doing the damage either side of Adam Lallana’s and Rickie Lambert’s strikes in the match.

It was also the first game for Spurs under Tim Sherwood, with the victory going a long way towards securing the manager’s job on a full-time basis.

It is at home where Spurs have struggled however, as they have recorded fewer wins there than all of the other teams in the top six, whilst their five defeats at White Hart Lane is also a higher number than the four they have lost on the road this season.

Saints were last winners at White Hart Lane in the 2003/04 campaign when James Beattie struck twice and Kevin Phillips grabbed the other in a 3-1 success. 

The Lane has generally been an unhappy hunting ground for Southampton in recent times though, with that the only success in the past eleven top flight meetings there.

Saints’ current top scorer this season, Jay Rodriguez scored his first ever Premier League goal against Tottenham in a 2-1 defeat at St Mary’s last term, whilst both Morgan Schneiderlin and Rickie Lambert are in line to make their 200th league appearances for the visitors.

Jose Fonte could play his 175th match for the club, and Nathaniel Clyne would make his 50th start for the club if selected.

Read Adam Lallana’s thoughts on the game >>>

Team News

Jack Cork is unlikely to return from the injury he sustained at Crystal Palace, whilst Victor Wanyama and Guly do Prado are unlikely to make it. 

Morgan Schneiderlin has emerged as a doubt, and Kelvin Davis remains out, so Paulo Gazzaniga will deputise again on the bench.

Spurs could have Emmanuel Adebayor, Mousa Dembele and Younes Kaboul all back after they missed Thursday's Europa League match with Benfica.

Jan Vertonghen also returns after he was suspended for the trip to Portugal.

Fellow defenders, Vlad Chiriches, Michael Dawson and Kyle Walker were also sidelined in midweek with knocks.

Pre-match quotes

Mauricio Pochettino:

“You never know [if it’s a good time to play them].

“You need to analyse the performance of every single team after the game. We know that it’s going to be a different game so it will be a completely different contest with a different team.

“I think Spurs are going to be a completely different side to the one that played against Benfica last night in the Europa League. The Tottenham squad is quite plentiful, they have a few players and we expect a really tough game on Sunday.”

Previous Meetings

The two teams met during December, when a 3-2 defeat for Southampton at St Mary’s proved to be a fine first audition for Spurs caretaker boss Tim Sherwood as the man he brought back in from the cold, Emmanuel Adebayor struck two of the visitors’ three goals.

Adam Lallana and Rickie Lambert were on target for Saints that day, with the former opening the scoring after 13 minutes.

It was a 1-0 defeat for Southampton at White Hart Lane in the last meeting in north London at the end of the 2012/13 campaign. Former Saints man Gareth Bale settled the contest late on with his penultimate strike in English football before departing for Real Madrid in the summer.

Bale struck he decisive effort in the reverse fixture at St Mary’s last season too when the visitors were 2-1 winners here. Jay Rodriguez netted Saints’ effort in that game.

Prior to last season, the two teams had not faced each other since the 2004/05 season.

In that campaign, Saints were beaten heavily at White Hart Lane with Peter Crouch's goal proving insignificant as a Jermaine Defoe hat trick plus goals from Frederic Kanoute and Robbie Keane gave the hosts a 5-1 win.

As previously mentioned, Saints were 3-1 winners at the Lane in 2003/04, and went on to record a double of victories that season with a 1-0 success at S t Mary’s.

Overall, Saints have faced Spurs in 112 competitive fixtures. 36 of those have gone the way of Southampton, 48 have ended in Spurs wins and 28 with honours even.

Match Information

Anthony Taylor will referee Sunday’s game, and he will be assisted by Mr S Child and Mr P Kirkup. Mr M Jones is the fourth official.

Travel Information

Be aware of ongoing rail engineering works taking place on weekends at Southampton Central. Click here to check which lines are affected.

Online Coverage

As with every First Team game, we'll be providing minute-by-minute coverage throughout the day on our official Twitter feed plus goal updates on our official Facebook page.

You can listen to live commentary courtesy of BBC Solent on Saints Player, where you can keep up to date with all the stats and scores from around the country.

Mauricio Pochettino and Artur Boruc spoke to Saints Player ahead of the game, and you can watch their interviews, as well as the press conferences in full on our video channel before the game.

After the match there will be plenty more content on saintsfc.co.uk and Saints Player, so stay tuned!

And if you’re coming to the game, don’t forget to take your smartphones and join in with #MarchingIn on our social media channels. Tweet us @SouthamptonFC or comment on our official Facebook page and upload images onto Instagram with the #MarchingIn for a chance to appear in a future edition of our Matchday Magazine.

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