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PREVIEW: Sheffield United vs Southampton

Southampton will be looking to end their losing streak and get to the Capital One Cup semi-final as they travel up to Sheffield to take on the Blades.

Alex Livesey/Getty Images

A lot has changed since this Capital One Cup draw was made back in October. Southampton were second in the Premier League and enjoying a run of 11 wins in 12 games.

Fast forward to December and Sheffield United will really fancy their chances against a depleted Saints side, who have suffered injuries to various key players and are struggling to overcome their tough winter Premier League run-in - which has seen the Hampshire club handed four successive defeats.

It will be a tough ask for Sheffield United, but they have a fantastic cup record under current boss Nigel Clough. They have already knocked out Premier League surprise package West Ham out of this year's Capital One Cup, while knocked out two Premier League sides in Fulham and Aston Villa when they reached the FA Cup semi-final last season.

In terms of team news, the Blades are missing Paddy McCarthy and Chris O'Grady as they're ineligible, while Chris Basham is close to full fitness and could start. Saints will be missing top scorer Graziano Pelle through suspension, while it is still unclear if Morgan Schneiderlin will be fit or not.

Ronald Koeman could welcome James Ward-Prowse back into a starting role, which would be a welcome addition given Southampton's recent midfield injury issues. Saints have lost the likes of Schneiderlin, Ward-Prowse, Jack Cork and youngster Jake Hesketh from their midfield over the last couple of months.

Southampton haven't reached the League Cup semi-final stage since 1987, before losing to Liverpool that year. Saints will be bringing over 4,000 fans up north (a 400 mile round trip) to will their team on to break that 27 duck.