Southampton vs Brentford: Premier League Preview, Gameweek 7, 2022
Stuart Armstrong closes down Vitaly Janelt during Southampton's 4-1 win over Brentford in January. Photo by Bryn Lennon/Getty Images. 

Southampton host Thomas Frank's Brentford at St. Mary's Stadium on Saturday in what is just the third-ever top-flight meeting between the clubs. 

A fixture that has largely been contested in the second and third tiers over the past century, Brentford versus Southampton has been evenly contested since the turn of the millennium with three wins apiece and three draws in nine encounters. 

Last season's meeting at St. Mary's saw the hosts inflict the Bees heaviest Premier League defeat to date with a 4-1 win, but Thomas Frank got his revenge with a comfortable 3-0 win at the Brentford Community Stadium in May. 

Southampton will be keen to repeat January's result and get back to winning form after losing 1-0 to Wolves at the weekend. Fans were left disappointed by the result as Daniel Podence's scuffed shot made it past a flat-footed Gavin Bazunu before Che Adams produced a contender for miss of the season in the second half. 

It was a different set of fortunes for the Bees as they ran riot in a 5-2 win against Leeds United in what was the club's biggest top-flight win since 1938. Ivan Toney stole the show with an outstanding hat-trick and was accompanied on the scoresheet by Bryan Mbuemo, who scored within seconds of Leeds making it 3-2, and Yoane Wissa. 

A win for Brentford would see them extend their unbeaten run to five matches in all competitions while three points for the hosts will take them above their opponents in the table.

Team news 

Southampton

Ralph Hasenhüttl will be without the man Chelsea verbally offered £50 million for on transfer deadline day Romeo Lavia due to a hamstring injury sustained against the Blues in gameweek 5. 

New signing Duje Ćaleta-Car could be in contention to make his debut after missing the defeat to Wolves due to a lack of fitness. Tino Livramento remains a long-term absentee as he recovers from an interior cruciate ligament injury that will sideline him until the new year. 

Gavin Bazunu will remain in goal and has been publicly backed by Hasenhüttl after the 20-year-old received criticism following the Wolves game. 

"I like how he plays and how he gets his position very offensive on the jump. He had two or three situations where he was going there and I ask him to do this," Hasenhüttl said post-match. 

“When you go all in and play with a high line, you have to have a goalkeeper behind you who is on the jump and can clear situations, like he did a couple of times with dangerous situations. This is good and this is what I want to see, and I am very happy.”

Brentford

This fixture could see Kristoffer Ajer make his first appearance since the last game of the 2021/22 season after he was an unused substitute against Leeds last weekend. 

Christian Nørgaard will miss out due to an Achilles injury while Sergi Canós is a doubt but is back training with the squad. Ethan Pinnock is making progress but it is still too early for him as he is currently training individually. 

Likely line-ups

Southampton

Bazunu; Walker-Peters, Bella-Kotchap, Salisu, Perraud; Diallo, Ward-Prowse; Elyounoussi, Aribo, A. Armstrong; Adams. 

Brentford 

Raya; Hickey, Jansson, Mee, Henry; Dasilva, Janelt, Jensen; Mbeumo, Toney, Lewis-Potter. 

Key players

Southampton: Armel Bella-Kotchap 

Since Bella-Kotchap's introduction to the line-up in gameweek 2 against Leeds, Hasenhüttl's side has made a considerable defensive improvement on the 4-1 defeat to Tottenham in their opening game of the season. 

The 20-year-old is quickly endearing himself to Saints fans with standout performances, most notably in the 1-0 defeat to Manchester United and the 2-1 win at home against Chelsea, which saw him make crucial last-ditch challenges to prevent Anthony Elanga and Raheem Sterling from goal scoring opportunities.

He is forming a strong relationship with Mohammed Salisu and alike his partner, he has a willingness to be aggressive and step up to make interceptions, before driving forward with the ball into dangerous areas. The centre-back is quick and times tackles effectively which will be important on Saturday if Southampton are to nullify Brentford's threat on the counter. 

 

Brentford: Ivan Toney 

Fresh from scoring his second Premier League hat-trick at the weekend, Toney will be keen to further impress with an eye on being called-up to Gareth Southgate's squad for England's Nations League fixtures against Italy and Germany later this month. 

The 26-year-old scored his 50th, 51st and 52nd goals for Brentford against Leeds, of which included an unstoppable free-kick into the top corner and an audacious lob over two defenders after dribbling around goalkeeper Illan Meslier, and will again have a key role in if his side are to claim three points. 

Toney will not be able to beat Southampton's centre-back duo for pace, but he will cause them havoc with his willingness to back into defenders to either draw a foul or receive the ball and set-up a team-mate in a threatening position. His threat in front of goal needs no introduction so the Saints will have a difficult task in containing him. 

Match details 

Where is the game being played? 

St. Mary's Stadium, Southampton.

What time is kick-off? 

The kick-off is at 15:00 (BST) on Saturday, 10 September.

How can I watch? 

This game is not being broadcasted in the United Kingdom. 

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