Chelsea travel to St Mary's on Saturday evening in search of a third straight Premier League win that could increase pressure on Roberto Mancini and Manchester City in the race for second place. City face Newcastle United at the same time and lead the Blues by only four points.

The Saints, meanwhile, will host the Stamford Bridge club after demolishing Liverpool 3-1 before the international break. Mauricio Pochettino's men pulled off an epic upset over the Merseyside club a fortnight ago and a second successive high-profile scalp could do wonders in their battle to avoid relegation. Southampton are 16thin the table, only four points above Wigan in the first relegation spot.

Demba Ba (L) and Maya Yoshida

Where to Watch

Kick-off is scheduled for 3pm GMT. Radio commentary is available on BBC Radio 5 live. Catch highlights on Match of the Day on BBC One, at 10.30pm GMT.


Southampton will start this game with fond memories of the defeat of Liverpool but Pochettino will knopw that Chelsea are a different proposition to Brendan Rodgers' side. The Champions League winners are intent on chasing down City in second and will want every point they can get to do that; the fact Tottenham and Arsenal are chasing them, in turn, only adds to the sense of urgency in Rafael Benitez's camp.

However, having said that, Chelsea will also have one eye on Monday afternoon's FA Cup replay against Manchester United. The Blues did excellently to force the second game - a 2-2 draw at Old Trafford and will be keen to progress to the semi-final.

The Saints have a reasonable home record, with five wins and five draws in 15 games. They've scored 22 times in those games, which is about as many as any other side in the bottom half of the table. The win against the Reds means they halted a three-match winless run in some style.

More importantly, the Liverpool defeat was preceded by the equally unexpected dismantling of City; the champions lost, by the same score as Rodgers' men, when they visited in early February. The problem, though, is their record against Chelsea is poor. Southampton have not beaten the west London club since New Years' Day 2002.

Fernando Torres

Benitez, meanwhile, comes to St Mary's after a comfortable 2-0 win over West Ham United. The win means the London club have now won three of the last five league games. It has been a busy period for the club, with an astonishing seven games in February and a further six this month. April is unlikely to be any less demanding, with the game against United followed by the visit of Russians Rubin Kazan for a UEFA Europa League tie; a total of eight games are scheduled between 1 and 27 April.

Team Form


  • Last Five (all competitions, most recent first): W D L L W
  • Last Match: Southampton 3 - 1 Liverpool


  • Last Five (all competitions, most recent first): W W D L W
  • Last Match: Chelsea 2 - 0 West Ham United

Team News

Pochettino is likely to name an unchanged side from the one that beat Liverpool, with the exception of centre-back Jos Hooiveld. Expect Jose Fonte to be the replacement.

Probable Line-Up: Boruc; Clyne, Yoshida, Fonte, Shaw; Schneiderlin, Cork; Rodriguez, Ramirez, Lallana; Lambert

Captain and veteran centre-back John Terry could be in line for a start, given Gary Cahill's knee problems ruled him out of midweek action for the English national side. There are no major injury worries for Benitez but, as mentioned earlier, expect significant rotation of players.

Probable Line-Up: Cech; Azpilicueta, Luiz, Terry, Bertrand; Ramires, Lampard; Oscar, Mata, Moses; Torres