Premier League Preview: Everton vs. Southampton

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  • Southampton hasn’t won back-to-back matches all season
  • Everton has conceded the 10th-most goals at home (21 in 18 matches)
  • Saints one point behind Swansea in PL survival race

Everton hosts Southampton from Goodison Park on Saturday (Watch live at 12:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com) as the Toffees aim to spoil their opponent’s chances of surviving relegation.

Heading into the weekend, the Saints in 18th place on 32 points, just one behind Swansea City. Meanwhile, Everton sits in eighth with two matches remaining.

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Mark Hughes‘ Southampton is coming off of an important 2-1 win over Bournemouth last weekend at St. Mary’s, but the club will need to find another resilient performance in order to snap its poor fortunes over the second half of the season.

The Saints have won just two of their last 10 league matches, which has contributed greatly to the team’s demise.

Everton will be without a host of talent though on Saturday, with James McCarthy, Eliaquim Mangala, Gylfi Sigurdsson, Maarten Stekelenburg, Mason Holgate and Dominic Calvert-Lewin all named in the injury report and not expected to dress for the match.

What they’re saying

Sam Allardyce on preventing Southampton from carrying over its momentum from last week:“I’m surprised to see all three teams in the bottom three. At the start of the season you wouldn’t have expected it, but it can happen for many reasons. We’re facing a team that is going to fight tooth and nail against us tomorrow. We have got to try and fight that tomorrow.”

Mark Hughes on importance of earning a second win in a row“Momentum is great if you gain momentum at the right time. Clearly if you are going for trophies and you are playing well in key games then that will help you to be successful. The same is true for teams in our situation. If we can build momentum on the back of the Bournemouth result then clearly that is going to help us at this stage of the season. Back-to-back results is massive at any stage of the season because invariably it shoves you up the table. We haven’t been able to do it on too many occasions. If we are able to manage it at the weekend then clearly that is a huge boost for us with what we have ahead of us.”

Prediction

A number of notable injuries for the Toffees could be exactly what Southampton needs to pull off a miraculous turnaround in its attempt of survival. That being said, Everton has been tremendous at home this season, and even without the likes of Sigurdsson and Calvert-Lewin this is still a quality side under Sam Allardyce. Everton 1-1 Southampton