LONDON (Reuters) - Southampton will continue their battle for top-flight survival when they host south coast neighbours Bournemouth at St Mary’s Stadium on Saturday.
Mark Hughes’ side are four points adrift of safety with just four fixtures remaining and will also be without the services of Sofiane Boufal, who has been banished from the first team squad after a training ground bust-up last week.
Here is what the fans have to say about their respective clubs:
Matt Markstone, Southampton Dellivery Podcast “If Saints have any chance of staying in the Premier League then they need to find a way to get all three points on Saturday. There is almost no margin for error for us at this point in the season so whether it is a derby or not, a win is vital.
“I am predicting that Southampton will win 2-1. Our defence is simply too fragile and we are vulnerable in the air, which is why I think Bournemouth will find the back of the net.
“If Southampton can somehow carve out a few chances for Charlie Austin early in the game and take an early lead, then I think we can potentially hit them on the counter as Bournemouth push to get back into it.
“The rivalry between Southampton and Bournemouth is definitely real, but we don’t consider it a derby. For Saints, the only real derby is Portsmouth. However, the desire to be ‘the’ team on the South Coast means the game can get heated. It’s more like playing against your cousin or sibling, rather than your arch nemesis or rival.”
James Charles, East Stand Season Ticket Holder “Most Bournemouth fans are really looking forward to this match. We have the chance to hammer the final nails into the Saints’ coffin.
“It looks like Southampton are going to be relegated - their remaining matches are pretty tough and I imagine they see this game as their last chance for three points. As a result, both sides will be going for it and we want to send them down.
“In fairness they have had the best of things for decades so their supporters probably consider us like an irritating younger brother who isn’t really a threat.
“I’m predicting 1-0 win for Bournemouth. I think that this will be a fairly scrappy affair – but as is often the case in local derby fixtures, there will be lots of tough tackles and plenty of passion and perhaps even the odd red card, too.
“The pace of Nathan Redmond could be a threat in the dying stages of the match and Charlie Austin could always nick a goal if he’s fit.”