Southampton-Newcastle United Preview


Newcastle United are one of the form teams in the Premier League and will try to extend Southampton's winless run to five matches when they meet at St. James' Park on Saturday.

This match-up pits two top-half of the table sides, with Alan Pardew's Magpies (8-2-5) soaring past the Saints (6-5-4) in the table with five wins in their last six matches. Newcastle United are in seventh place on 26 points - three more than eighth-placed Southampton.

Newcastle recorded their first win at Old Trafford since 1972 with a 1-0 victory last Saturday over stuttering Manchester United thanks to Yohan Cabaye's 61st-minute strike. It was just reward for a Magpies side that enjoyed the bulk of possession and turned away the English champions at every turn.

"I asked the team to have more control of the game, keep the ball and we did that really well," Pardew said. "We wouldn't let Man United get through us, probably their biggest threat came on the break but my players were outstanding today."

The lone negative was that Cabaye picked up a yellow card in the ninth minute and is suspended due to accumulation.

Mauricio Pochettino's Saints were one of the league's surprise packages before this run of three defeats and a draw, although the point his side obtained last Saturday in a 1-1 draw with Manchester City was a welcome one.

''It was a very important point today, to end the bad results we've been on,'' Pochettino said. ''Psychologically today, to end with a result, was amazing for us.''

The Saints had fallen to Arsenal, Chelsea and Aston Villa in succession before a riveting contest at St. Mary's in which they may have been the better side over big-spending City.

Pablo Osvaldo scored in his second consecutive match after managing just one goal in his first 10 appearances in the Premier League. The striker, known more commonly as Dani, was signed by Pochettino from Roma for a club-record fee of 15 million pounds.

"I think with all new players that come from abroad that come into this league, we need to be patient," Pochettino said. "And we've been patient with Dani and today he's shown exactly why we've been patient with him."

Osvaldo's emergence could keep Rickie Lambert rooted to the bench. The Saints have won all four matches in which Lambert has scored.

Pardew will look for Loic Remy to add to his haul of eight goals - tied for the fourth-best total in the Premier League. Remy, however, hasn't scored in his last three matches.

The Frenchman was on target in his lone career match against the Saints last season, a 2-1 victory for relegated Queens Park Rangers on March 2.

The Saints have lost on their last five trips to Newcastle, falling 4-2 in February after winning 2-0 in the return fixture at St. Mary's.

The linesmen could be busy since the Saints have been caught offside 48 times - the most in the league. Remy has been caught 17 times for Newcastle to tie Arsenal's Olivier Giroud for the most among all players, while Lambert is third at 16.