Southampton vs Chelsea preview, betting tips and prediction: Time is running out for Mark Hughes' Saints

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Mark Hughes may have taken over as Southampton boss some weeks ago, but he is finally set to make his bow at St Mary’s as Chelsea come to town on Saturday. Time is running out for the Saints as the battle for Premier League survival intensifies; they need to start winning soon and, although facing the reigning champions may seem like a daunting task, Antonio Conte’s men could be there for the taking if the home side can improve in front of goal. Hughes’ impact has hardly been great, but he has seen them through to an FA Cup semi final, and his side played with the kind of heart and desire needed to escape at Arsenal last week but, crucially, they remain three points adrift in the relegation zone.

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But Chelsea have only won three league games in 2018 and Conte is cutting a more disgruntled figure as the weeks go on. His future at Stamford Bridge looks bleak and the players appear to realise that; starting fast and putting the Blues on the back foot could really reap rewards for Hughes’ men, and the atmosphere should be a good one. They cannot be ruled out, but we think Chelsea will take the points because the hosts lack that killer instinct in front of goal. Grab some free bets from Betfair today!

Form

Neither of these sides are in good shape at all coming into this game. Southampton have not won in six Premier League games and that one victory over West Brom is their only one in the last 20.

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Chelsea, meanwhile, have failed to find any sort of consistency since Christmas and find themselves ten points adrift of the top four.

Team News

Chelsea will be without David Luiz and Ross Barkley for their trip to the South Coast, while Southampton have a fully fit squad.

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