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Southampton vs Sunderland – Match Preview

Left-back Ryan Bertrand will have a late fitness check after recovering from a knee problem and could make his first start for Southampton under Claude Puel.

Sunderland goalkeeper Jordan Pickford is expected to play after Vito Mannone was ruled out for a minimum of three months with an elbow injury.

John O’Shea (hip), Lamine Kone (back), Fabio Borini (toe) and Jeremain Lens (foot) are being assessed and new signing Javier Manquillo could feature for the first time.

Billy Jones, Lee Cattermole and Sebastian Larsson are all still injured.

Both sides are still looking for their first win of the season and David Moyes has arguably dug himself a bit of a hole after his comments in the week regarding Sunderland’s objectives for this season. You could see what he was trying to do by saying that Sunderland were in for another relegation battle but fans of the club won’t necessarily want to hear those kind of words uttered from the man in charge.

What Moyes said is nothing short of correct but you do have to wonder if it’s the kind of words that are best left unsaid. If you start spouting that you are in for another battle against the drop then surely subconsciously that’s the kind of mentality that the players will now have at The Stadium of Light.

Southampton showed some bright moments at Old Trafford last Friday but after going behind they never really managed to get back into the game, they didn’t disgrace themselves but they never quite looked like picking up a third win in a row at Old Trafford.

Today though should pose a completely different proposition and although Claude Puel is perhaps still trying to work out his best side you get the feeling they will still have enough quality to beat Sunderland regardless of who the personnel for the Saints turns out to be. I’ll go for a home win on the South Coast this afternoon.

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