Southampton vs Leicester City Preview & Betting Tips: Get Over It

James MaddisonAfter losing at home to the Premier League leaders last time out, The Foxes travel to the south coast on Saturday (5.30pm) to take on the Saints, who also came up short in their last league game. Both teams could do with a win but can either get one at St. Mary’s. It’s live on Sky Sports and it’s Southampton vs Leicester City.

Read on for our full EPL game Saints FC vs LCFC preview with betting tips.

The pressure was always going to be on temporary Southampton manager Ruben Selles right from the off, but that really intensified on Wednesday night, as his team crashed out of the FA Cup, despite facing League Two opposition on home soil. Try as they might, the Saints couldn’t get ahead in that fixture and by the time they did score through defender Duje Caleta-Car, it was too little, too late.

Of course, remaining in the Premier League is the focus for the south coast side, but such a defeat doesn’t exactly build momentum ahead of what is a very important fixture.

The Foxes were also sent packing in the FA Cup during the week, as they too lost to lower-level opposition in front of a home crowd. Blackburn did the damage, and like the Saints, when the Foxes did find the net through Kelechi Iheanacho, it was too late. That defeat came after their loss to Arsenal last weekend, which followed what was a timid display in defeat to Manchester United the week before. After seemingly staging a revival, Brendan Rodger’s men need to bounce back once again.

Often when a team is struggling, they take cover at home, but that hasn’t been the case for the Saints, who’ve found very little solace at St. Mary’s this term. In fact, they have been downright poor in front of their own fans, who by now must be growing somewhat tired of their team’s struggles.

As things stand, Saturday’s hosts are by far the worst team in the league in terms of points taken at home. They have picked up just six from a possible 33 on their own patch. They are also the joint-worst team in the division in terms of goals conceded at home, whilst only one Premier League team has scored fewer home goals than Southampton.

For the most part, without really impressing, they have done OK offensively, scoring in all but three of their 11 home games, but it is what’s happened in the defensive third that has been really costly. The Saints are without a clean sheet at home this term, conceding an average of 1.72 goals per 90 minutes.

Foxes also struggling defensively

Fortunately for Southampton, the Foxes can’t keep things tight either. They arrive here without a clean sheet in the Premier League since November, and as things stand, they are currently the second worst team in the division when it comes to goals conceded. Saturday’s visitors have conceded even more than their hosts on this occasion.

On the road, scoring goals hasn’t been much of an issue, which isn’t that surprising given the attacking talent at Brendan Rodger’s disposal. The likes of James Maddison and Harvey Barnes have been particularly threatening this term. However, they have just not kept things tight at the back at all.

In the Premier League alone, the Foxes have conceded 28 travelling goals. That really is appalling. Again, only one team in the EPL has conceded more away goals than Leicester, who have simply not shown enough defensive resolve on the road.

Saints struggling against the Foxes

When the teams last met, back at the start of the current campaign, Southampton came from behind to win by two goals to one, courtesy of a Che Adams double. However, that was their first win in this fixture for some time. In recent years, the Saints have struggled to get the better of the Foxes, winning just one of the last six renewals. Leicester have won three of the other five during that time.

When the teams last met at St. Mary’s, back in May of 2022, they drew 2-2. Each of the last two renewals of this fixture to be played on the south coast have ended in a draw. More interestingly, both teams have scored in each of those games and in the last four meetings between the pair overall.

Go for goals

After some poor results, both teams need a win here and both are likely to fancy their chances, which could lead to an exciting, attacking encounter. At odds of evens, ‘Over 2.5 Goals’ makes plenty of appeal.

Southampton have had their share of offensive problems, but they have still scored in each of their last three home games (in all competitions) and they ought to be buoyed by the dismal defending shown by Leicester on the road this season.

It is the lack of defensive strength shown all round that is the catalyst here. We are talking about two of the worst back-lines in the league. Between them, they have conceded 80 goals, shipping averages of 1.78 and 1.73. Throw in Leicester’s fondness for creating lots and allowing their opponents to create plenty on the road, with them averaging 1.50 xG for and 2.12 against, and a high scoring match really does start to appeal at the current odds.

After all, the pair shared four goals when they met earlier in the campaign. The visitors rank second in the league in terms of average goals per game, with an average of 3.25 goals being scored in the Foxes Premier League encounters this term.

So for the betting tips, there is just the one conclusion this Saints vs LCFC preview can draw: