Charlie Austin

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Premier League Preview: Tottenham vs. Southampton

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  • Spurs unbeaten in last 11 Boxing Day fixtures; Saints unbeaten in last six
  • Southampton has won just ONE of last 10 matches
  • Harry Kane needs one goal to break PL goal record in calendar year
  • Saints have won just three of 18 meetings against Spurs 

Tottenham looks to build off of its impressive performance at Turf Moor, as Spurs play host to Southampton on Tuesday (Watch live at 7:30 a.m. ET on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com) at Wembley Stadium.

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Spurs bounced back on Saturday with an important 3-0 victory over Burnley, keeping Mauricio Pochettino‘s men within striking distance of the top four. Meanwhile, Southampton enters Boxing Day winless in its last six matches.

Eric Dier could be missing for the hosts, after being substituted off against the Clarets, while Charlie Austin has been ruled out for Saints, along with the already-injured Cedric Soares and Ryan Bertrand.

What they’re saying

Mauricio Pochettino on Harry Kane’s brilliance“I think he still can improve. He’s 24, I think the player arrives at their best at 27, 28, 29, depending how professional you are. But Harry Kane, if he keeps that mentality, keeps working hard every day in the training sessions and never changes that mentality, he can play until he wants to.”

Mauricio Pellegrini on Saints’ inconsistency“We are in the middle of the season and obviously we couldn’t show consistency, especially in results, because we couldn’t win even those games we deserve to win and we create a lot of chances. Football is efficiency to score goals and to convert. Still, we’ve got 50% of the tournament to bounce back and try to change this mood and it has to start on Tuesday.”

Prediction

Two words; Harry Kane. The man is brilliant, and even when his side isn’t playing its best, it seems like the Englishman finds a way to pick up the slack. Tottenham is unbeaten in its last eight matches at Wembley, and Southampton’s lack of success at the venue will make it even tougher to take down an in-form Spurs. Tottenham 3-1 Southampton

Charlie Austin charged with violent conduct for Lossl kick

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Southampton striker Charlie Austin has been charged by the FA with violent conduct for his kick to the face of Huddersfield Town goalkeeper Jonas Lossl, and has until 12 p.m. ET to respond.

[ MORE: Midseason Premier League awards ]

UPDATED: Austin has been handed a three-match ban, and has accepted the sanctions from England’s FA.)

In the 37th minute of Southampton’s 1-1 draw against Huddersfield, Austin chased a through-ball that Lossl had come out to collect. As the Terriers goalkeeper slid to ground to scoop up the loose ball, Austin leapt over Lossl’s head as he followed through, but not before sticking the tip of his boot straight into the face of the Danish keeper.

Lossl rolled on the ground for a while in obvious pain, and while he stayed in the game, it is suspected he suffered a broken nose. Austin was not cautioned for the incident by the match referee, as in real-time it was difficult to spot the intent. Huddersfield manager David Wagner criticized the Saints striker after the match, but admitted he did not see how bad it was until watching the replay.

“After seeing the video footage, this should usually never happen, that an opponent hurts another opponent on purpose,” Wagner said in his post-match media availability. “I don’t like to say this, but it looks this way. Jonas as well was absolutely surprised. This was a nasty challenge and nothing I like to see. I think he looks like this challenge was very ugly and nasty. This should never happen. Charlie Austin made the wrong decision in this moment.”

Austin would likely be slapped with a three-game ban if he accepts the charge, which would see him miss matches on Boxing Day against Tottenham, New Year’s Eve against Manchester United, and January 2nd against Crystal Palace.

Whether he accepts the charge or not, the 28-year-old suffered a hamstring injury later in the Huddersfield game and is likely out for the rest of the festive period anyways, according to Southampton manager Mauricio Pellegrino, who said he would be out “a couple of weeks minimum.”

Southampton 1-1 Huddersfield: No win in six for Saints

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  • Saints have won just one of their last 10 PL games (D3 L5) and are winless in their last six
  • Southampton haven’t kept a clean sheet in any of their last 10 PL games
  • Huddersfield with 4 points from last 2 away games

Southampton’s winless run stretched to six Premier League games as they drew 1-1 with Huddersfield at St Mary’s on Saturday.

Charlie Austin gave Saints the lead but Laurent Depoitre equalized for the Terriers in a feisty festive clash.

With the point Saints move on to 19 for the season, while Huddersfield have 22 at the midway point of the season.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Huddersfield started well with Tom Ince pulling the back to Aaron Mooy but the Australian took too much time to get his shot away and Jack Stephens blocked it.

The Terriers kept pouring forward and Christopher Schindler forced Fraser Forster into a fine save as he tipped the ball onto the bar and out.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]

Saints finally woke up and they took the lead midway through the first half. Austin stooped in to head home the opener to continue his fine recent form and give the home side the lead. 1-0.

Following the goal there was then a long stoppage in play as Huddersfield goalkeeper Jonas Lossl was caught in the face by Austin’s boot, but referee Lee Probert decided to take no further action. Lossl denied Dusan Tadic before the break as Saints were worthy of their lead.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

In the second half Saints looked dangerous on the break with Nathan Redmond rushing clear but Austin fired wide, squandering a great chance.

Southampton were made to pay for that miss as Tommy Smith crossed from the right and Depoitre headed home after completely losing his marker. Terrible defending by Saints but the Terriers weren’t complaining. 1-1.

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

Huddersfield looked the most likely to grab the winner as Smith’s cross found Joe Lolley who then played in Scott Malone but his shot was saved by Forster.

Maya Yoshida saw a header hit the post, rebound of Lossl but fail to go in as the home side couldn’t find a winner.

Austin limped off with a hamstring injury late on to compound Saints’ misery as Pellegrino’s men now travel to Tottenham and Manchester United for their next two games.

PL AT HALF: Saivet’s slick free kick, Aguero goal amonst highlights

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Four of six Premier League 10 a.m. ET kickoffs have seen at least a goal as the Premier League fits nine matches into this eve of Christmas Eve.

[ STREAM: Every PL game live here ] 

Manchester City 1-0 Bournemouth

Sergio Aguero has improved his record as Man City’s all-time leading scorer with his 100th goal at the Etihad Stadium, moving the Premier League leaders into the lead before the half hour mark.

West Ham United 1-1 Newcastle United

Making his first Premier League start for Rafa Benitez, midfielder Henri Saivet has been the architect of awful and amazing. He scored on the free kick above, moments after doing this:

Swansea City 0-0 Crystal Palace

The Welsh hosts may’ve deserved a penalty, and were let off the hook at the other end by an uncharacteristic Wilfried Zaha stumble.

Southampton 1-0 Huddersfield Town

Charlie Austin flicked Wes Hoedt‘s cross behind Jonas Lossl to open the scoring at St. Mary’s.

Stoke City 2-0 West Bromwich Albion

Joe Allen has scored a potentially massive goal as the Potters aim for three points in an early relegation six-pointer, and Eric Choupo-Moting doubled the advantage before the break.

Brighton and Hove Albion 0-0 Watford

The Seagulls started very bright, but have so far been unable to manufacture a goal.

Chelsea 1-0 Southampton: Blues edge Saints

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  • Alonso’s free kick on half time seals win
  • Southampton with 1 win in 9
  • Chelsea in third place

Chelsea edged by Southampton at Stamford Bridge on Saturday with Marcos Alonso‘s free kick the difference between the two teams.

Antonio Conte‘s side dominated for large periods and missed several good chances, yet Saints had opportunities on the break but failed to take them.

With the win Chelsea solidify third-place in the table, while Saints remain on 18 points and continue their slide down the table to 12th place.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Saints had a decent chance early on as Ryan Bertrand whipped in a delightful cross but Gary Cahill cleared under pressure from James Ward-Prowse.

Cedric was then forced off with injury for Saints after a heavy challenge from Cahill and Mario Lemina came on with a defensive reshuffle.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]

Willian went close but curled an effort wide and on the break Manolo Gabbiadini threatened but Fraser Foster was busy and Bertrand made a great last-ditch tackle to deny Willian.

Pedro‘s deflected effort hit the post just before the break but Saints couldn’t hold on until the break. Alonso caught Forster napping and snuck in a fine free kick at the near post to put Chelsea 1-0 up.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

Willian danced free of Saints’ defense in the second half but fired well over and the visitors had their first big chance of the game as Charlie Austin came off the bench and his first act was to race free but Thibaut Courtois saved well.

Another substitute, Cesc Fabregas, went close as he almost made the most of quick free kick from Willian but his audacious effort went just wide.

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

Late on Saints pushed hard for an equalizer but Chelsea held on comfortably for their eighth win in their last 10 games.

Hardly champagne football from Chelsea, but Conte’s boys got the job done.