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Southampton will have been looking for an immediate response after their 9-0 humiliation at the hands of Man United, though a 3-2 home defeat to a struggling Newcastle side is certainly not what they had in mind, and that’s now five successive league defeats for Ralph Hasenhuttle’s men.
In the midst of that run though, they’ve managed successive FA Cup wins against Shrewsbury and Arsenal to get them to the fifth round for only the second time since 2013/14.
Wolves did well again at the weekend to hold a difficult Leicester side, and after a period of 10 successive matches without keeping a clean sheet, they’ve now conceded just two goals in total across their last five outings as their defence seems to have regrouped.
They’ve kept two clean sheets in as many games in this competition having achieved narrow 1-0 wins over Crystal Palace and Chorley, though if that shows anything else it’s that output has been a massive struggle since the loss of Raul Jimenez.
They’ve averaged under a goal per game since the Mexican’s injury across all competitions as Willian Jose hasn’t quite filled his boots in the way Nuno Espirito Santo will have wanted, and we can see output being limited again here.
Even though the Saints have struggled at the back in recent weeks with the absences of Ryan Bertrand, Jannik Vestergaard and Kyle Walker-Pieters, and that, alongside two red cards, can mitigate most of that 9-0 defeat last week.
Two of that defensive trio were back for the Newcastle game though, and conceding three against 10-men in that game should be cause for concern.
Wolves And Southampton To Draw
We’d expect both sides to play near full strength teams for this one, considering this is realistically the only thing either club are fighting for this season, as mid-table mediocrity looks the likely destination on the league front.
Wolves have struggled up against middle third sides since their return to the Premier League, with just a 40% win rate against such sides in the league, while their win over nine-man Arsenal last week was their first in six such matches.
There’s very little to separate these sides considering an attack lacking potency will be coming up against a leaky defence, so this looks likely to be a game of fine margins.
Both are yet to concede in this year’s competition, and with neither attack firing on all cylinders at the moment there’s no shock in seeing ‘Unders’ at such a short price, so we’ll avoid that and take the draw as it looks the best value for money here.