Tip Southampton - Burnley
Only goal difference separates Southampton and Burnley ahead of their Premier League clash at St. Mary's on Saturday. The Saints are thirteenth in the table, two places behind their midtable counterparts. Ralph Hasenhuttl has done a remarkable job with his side this season, managing to march on and contend for a place in Europe after suffering a record-equalling Premier League defeat. That 9-0 battering at the hands of Leicester left Southampton in the relegation zone after ten games; it was the type of defensive display that explained their positioning. Inspired by the goalscoring heroics of Danny Ings, Southampton shook off the defeat and climbed the table. However, that ascent has stalled in recent weeks. Only one win from their last five matches in all competitions suggests that Southampton are yet to truly turn the corner. Hasenhuttl can't think about Europe until safety is mathematically certain.
Nor can Sean Dyche. He's been there before with Burnley and it was a double-edged sword. Fans were buzzing to have European fixtures but the squad struggled to cope with the new set of fixtures. Still, it's not the worst problem to have. Relegation is definitely more problematic. Burnley have the experience and spirit (as well as the quality) to ensure survival in the next few weeks. They enter this match on the back of a three-match unbeaten run in the league, which includes a 2-0 victory at Old Trafford over an admittedly flat Manchester United. That win was one of the most surprising results of the season given Burnley's struggles on the road. It was only their third win from 12 attempts away from home. There was no need to barricade the goal for fear of United scoring; Burnley can't fight their instincts though. When they take the lead, they tend to sit back. This is because they struggle to unlock defences. Defending is their strength so they protect their lead when they have one. Perhaps that's why their last seven away matches have ended without one team scoring. Back against both teams scoring at St. Mary's.
Key points Southampton - Burnley
Southampton have failed to win any of their last six matches against Burnley.
None of Burnley's last seven away Premier League matches have featured both teams scoring.
Southampton have only picked up one victory from their last five games in all competitions.
Conclusion Southampton - Burnley
Fans tuning in to Southampton versus Burnley shouldn't put their expectations too high. Five of the last six matches between these teams featured two goals or fewer. We imagine that this match will follow that trend. Back against both teams scoring.
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Southampton Burnley Prediction published on February 13, 2020