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Southampton are going through a bad run of form and may welcome the distraction of an FA Cup tie. They’re just W2-D1-L9 since late January, with a 2-1 defeat to Brighton last time out dragging them ever closer towards a relegation scrap.
Bournemouth aren’t having it all their own way either and find themselves just outside the play-off spots as they seek an immediate return to the top flight.
After a reasonably strong start to the campaign, a drop off in form saw Jason Tindall get the boot in early February, and the jury remains out on Jonathan Woodgate after the former Tottenham, Newcastle and Real Madrid stepped into the role.
The Cherries are W6-D2-L3 under new management, and while there have been good performances such as a 2-0 win at Burnley in the previous round of this competition and a 3-0 takedown of Swansea last time out, there have also been a few disappointments thrown into the mix.
The hosts have won 10 of 16 home games since the start of November, including four of six with Woodgate at the helm. Although they’ve blown hot and cold, they look a decent price to get something from this south coast clash considering their rival’s current difficulties.
Che Adams To Score Anytime
Ralph Hasenhuttl is without a number of players here and although youngsters William Smallbone and Michael Obafemi would have been unlikely to take part in any case, midfielder Oriol Romeu and attacking talents Danny Ings, Theo Walcott and Takumi Minamino are all either injured or cup tied.
Without those last three the goalscoring burden will inevitably fall upon Che Adams, who has come into a bit of form with goals in each of Southampton’s past three outings.
The Saints have only failed to score in two of their past seven outings, despite their poor form, and he looks the man most likely to land a blow for the visitors.
Bournemouth Double Chance
Both teams have scored in five of Bournemouth’s last seven matches as clean sheets are proving hard to come by at the moment, but only Brentford have netted more goals in the Championship this term prior to Wednesday’s action, so there’ll certainly have chances to get at Southampton’s backline as well.
Woodgate will be without Shane Long, Lewis Cook and Daniel Brooks, while Junior Stanislas is a doubt, but there’s enough attacking talent in the ranks to suggest they’ll prove competitive.
The Saints have won just twice in 10 road trips, losing six of the last eight, so Bournemouth get our backing on the double chance.