Time is running out for Southampton in their bid to achieve survival. They surprised everyone by drawing 3-3 at Arsenal on Friday night but they dearly needed to get maximum points out of that match, and they blew a late lead. A victory for the Saints here would put them potentially just 3 points adrift of safety. Bournemouth could go well clear of the drop zone with a win of their own, so the stakes are really high at St Mary’s Stadium.
A game of this nature deserves a stats pack, and that’s exactly what I’ve provided for you today. Goals, shots, cards, corners, fouls, all that and more can be found below in order to give you a hand with selecting your bet builder. Feel free to use my Stats Pack Guide to further increase your chances of a winner as well.
Southampton should lineup in a 4-2-3-1 system. There’s a fight for a spot at full back, with Ainsley Maitland Niles, Kyle Walker-Peters, and Romain Perraud all in contention here. The former was ineligible to play vs parent club Arsenal. The rest of the team is fairly obvious barring any late injuries. The one exception is upfront where Paul Onuachu is expected to lead the line, but that is not set in stone.
Liverpool have been in good form recently so Jurgen Klopp will be reluctant to change too much. He has a lot more options available to him though now that their injury situation has improved significantly. Thiago could come into the side replacing Jones in midfield but it’s difficult to call. In attack, the likes of Darwin Nunez and Luis Diaz will be pushing for a spot in the team, possibly at the expense of Gakpo. The form of Jota and Salah is excellent right now so they should be automatic starters.
Southampton have scored just 0.84 goals per game and conceded 1.75. They have been underachieving at both ends of the field compared to their xG and xGA metrics, but this is legitimately a bad team. Saints simply don’t find the target enough at 3.47 times per game which is one of their main weaknesses.
The south coast outfit have only averaged 4.12 corners per game which is definitely on the low side. They have conceded an average of 5.31 to their opponents. Cards have been quite middling in Saints fixtures (3.69) with a very mixed bag both for and against. This is a crunch matchup though which might see some players step out of line more than usual.
Bournemouth average a disappointing 0.97 goals per game and 1.97 against. Their xG and xGA metrics are not very impressive either. This is a team that averages just 9.31 shots per game and a massive 16.62 against in each fixture. The opposition have managed to have 5.28 SOT vs the Cherries which is one of the main reasons why they have such a poor defensive record.
Bournemouth have conceded a whopping 7.09 corners on average per match and managed 3.84 themselves. Cards have been on the low side in their games at just 3.25. They have generally been quite a clean side and do not overly press or harass their opponents.
Player shots and shots on target
Onuachu has struggled for goals since joining in January and averages close to one SOT per 90 mins from 1.90 attempts. Walcott, Elyounoussi and Alcaraz all like to shoot but can’t be relied upon to hit the target. Alcaraz is improving though and is perhaps their best option. James Ward Prowse surprisingly only averages 1.13 shots per 90 mins despite being on penalty and set piece duty.
Dominic Solanke averages the most shots for the Cherries at 2.59 per 90 mins. He usually hits the target at least once in each fixture. The likes of Vina, Billing and Christie should be good for at least one attempt each in addition to midfielder Jefferson Lerma.
Player goals and assists
The biggest threat for Southampton is talisman James Ward-Prowse who has netted 7 goals and provided 2 assists. He is on penalty duties and also all set pieces. He is technically one of the best players in the Premier League from a dead ball situation. However, Saints have desperately lacked firepower this season. Alcaraz has been in better form recently but projected starting striker Paul Onuachu has yet to register a single goal since in big money move in January.
Phillip Billing leads Bournemouth with 7 goals this season. Dominic Solanke is more of a dual threat with 5 goals and also 6 assists. He is likely to offer the biggest threat in an attacking capacity. It has generally been a very poor season for the club in front of goal though and they have lacked firepower.
The man to look for in the Southampton passing market is talisman James Ward-Prowse. They only average 44.57% possession overall, but he racks up 50.3 passes per 90 mins.
It is worth noting that under Ruben Selles that Saints have averaged at least 50% of the ball in several Premier League matches, including a whopping 66% vs Brentford and 57% vs West Ham. Those figures were understandably down vs Man City and Arsenal, but they may well control the game here vs Bournemouth from a possession point of view
Bournemouth average just 39.80% possession which is the lowest in the Premier League. Despite playing rock bottom Southampton they may well lack passing numbers yet again. None of their players on this list average more than 45 passes per 90 mins. Considering their low numbers of possession then this is probably not a market worth looking at with any of Gary O’Neil’s men.
Southampton cards and Fouls
Romeo Lavia leads the Saints for cards with seven and is the obvious candidate to get stuck in here. James Ward-Prowse is also a contender to go into the referee’s book or produce at least one foul. Left back Romain Perraud averages 1.55 fouls per 90 mins and could be in for a testing evening should he start. Someone will have to deal with Solanke and Bella-Kotchap could be that man. He has a fairly low foul count though which is worth considering.
Dominic Solanke commands some attention upfront and is fouled 1.67 times per 90 mins. He is arguably their most dangerous player. Both Christie and Billing will also give the Saints fullbacks something to think about, whilst Dango Ouattara would potentially be an even tougher matchup should he feature. Left wing back Vina has a high foul average against him but his statistic are from very limited minutes.
Matchups to watch
Romeo Lavia vs Philip Billing
Armel Bella-Kotchap vs Dominic Solanke
Romain Perraud vs Ryan Christie or Dango Ouatarra
Bournemouth cards and fouls
The Cherries have not been particularly dirty this season and only average 1.78 cards per game. Adam Smith leads them in this category with 9 and generally fouls at least once per game. Chris Mepham and Phillip Billing have the next most cards for Bournemouth. None of the players on this list have particularly high numbers of fouls. The style and tactics of this team is often to sit back. They are not known for being a pressing side.
Both Alcaraz and Walker-Peters also have high dribbling rates so could be potentially tricky customers for Bournemouth. In midfield, Lavia is fouled 2.04 times per 90 mins and is an obvious contender to get involved with challenges.
Paul Onuachu is quite a physical striker and its no real surprise to see him fouled 1.62 times. His dribbling rate is also surprisingly high (3.24). Two defenders Bella-Kotchap and Walker-Peters are fouled at unusually high rates considering their positions.
Matchups to watch
Adam Smith vs Mohamed Elyounoussi
Chris Mepham vs Paul Onuachu
Phillip Billing vs Romeo Lavia
My Bet Builder Picks of the Pack
I’ve delved into the stats, and there are some great picks for this south coast derby. I’ve picked out a few for a bet builder, which you can take a look at below.