Premier League: Southampton vs Liverpool preview

Liverpool have the chance to get back to the top of the Premier League table on Friday, when they visit relegation candidates Southampton at St. Mary's. The reverse fixture was a fairly easy one for the Reds, they won it 3-0 with goals from Joel Matip and Mohamed Salah and an own-goal from Wesley Hoedt. Last season Liverpool defeated Southampton 3-0 at Anfield and 2-0 at St. Mary's, and Mohamed Salah scored in each of those matches as well. Those victories ended a streak of four matches without a win for Liverpool against the Saints. Overall, Southampton have won two of the last six matches against the Reds in all competitions.

Southampton are getting closer to securing their survival in the Premier League, they are five points clear of 18th-placed Cardiff and also have a game in hand, so most likely they would need two or three more wins to seal the deal. The Saints have been in good form lately, winning their last two Premier League matches. First they defeated Tottenham 2-1 before the international break, and last week they grabbed a 1-0 victory at Brighton. They have lost just one of their last five home matches. Jannik Vestergaard and Michael Obafemi are sidelined for the Saints, but Shane Long has returned to training and should be able to make the bench.

Liverpool can return to the top of the Premier League table, at least on a temporary basis, as Manchester City will be involved in the FA Cup semi-finals this weekend. The Citizens have a one-point advantage over the Reds in the league table, a very narrow margin with just six matches left in the season. Last weekend Liverpool secured a 2-1 home victory over Tottenham, extending their winning streak to four games in all competitions. However, they have conceded in each of those four matches, and that's a reason for manager Jurgen Klopp to worry after a streak of five consecutive clean sheets. Defender Virgil van Dijk might not be able to face his former club due to an ankle injury, while Joe Gomez and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain are lacking match fitness but might be involved from the bench.

Probable line-ups:

Southampton: Gunn - Valery, Bednarek, Yoshida, Bertrand - Romeu, Hojbjerg - Ward-Prowse, Armstrong - Redmond, Ings

Liverpool: Alisson - Alexander-Arnold, Matip, Van Dijk, Robertson - Wijnaldum, Fabinho, Keita - Salah, Firmino, Mane

My prediction: Liverpool to win 2-0, it's time for the Reds to record a clean sheet and get the three points as well.

Here are the odds for the match at Bet365:

Southampton win - 8.50
Draw - 4.75
Liverpool win - 1.44

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