Southampton will be hoping to make it three home wins in a row when they face Leeds United in front of 8,000 fans at St Mary’s on Tuesday evening.
After consecutive 3-1 victories over Crystal Palace and Fulham, Saints have the chance to finish as high as 12th in the Premier League once the final ball is kicked this season.
Marcelo Bielsa’s side will provide the biggest challenge of the three games and taking them on will be a real test of just how much Saints have improved in the last few weeks.
The previous meeting between these two teams back in February saw the Whites condemn Ralph Hasenhuttl’s men to a 3-0 defeat. They are now separated by four places and 10 points in the top-flight table.
Big double fitness boost for Southampton
In his pre-match press conference, Ralph Hasenhuttl confirmed that defender Jan Bednarek could return to his team after missing the win over Fulham at the weekend with a minor ankle injury.
Positive news was also given on Oriol Romeu’s situation. The Spaniard could take a place back in the matchday squad to face Leeds after returning to training with his teammates following recovery from a fractured ankle.
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It was against Leeds that Romeu picked up this problem as he turned his ankle on a dodgy looking Elland Road pitch, and the character of the player himself will mean that he is determined to play at least a small part in the final two games of the campaign.
Ryan Bertrand and Will Smallbone have long-term injuries which will mean the former has played his last game for Saints.
Leeds will be without defender Robin Koch, who joins Adan Forshaw, Helder Costa and Mateusz Klich on the sidelines. Marcelo Bielsa did suggest he could welcome Pablo Hernandez back into his plans if the midfielder comes through training well (via Leeds Live).
Predicted Saints line-up
Alex McCarthy; Kyle Walker-Peters, Jan Bednarek, Jannik Vestergaard, Jack Stephens; James Ward-Prowse, Stuart Armstrong; Theo Walcott, Nathan Redmond; Danny Ings, Che Adams
Nathan Tella and Theo Walcott will be pushing for starts after their impact of the bench against Fulham, as will Moussa Djenepo, Michael Obafemi and Ibrahima Diallo after limited game-time in recent weeks.
Jan Bednarek is likely to come straight back into the team and this could mean Mohammed Salisu drops out, with Jack Stephens shifting to left-back. Romeu is likely to take a place on the bench after only a short time back in full training.