Today sees the first iteration of the "2014 Dutch managerial job" derby. It's not a great name but should be an interesting encounter. After the world cup in Brazil Louis Van Gaal left Holland to take the reins of Manchester United. The Dutch FA had a clear choice between two candidates, and given their failure to qualify for Euro 2016, it would be fair to accuse them of making a mess of it.
Guus was chosen over Ron and Southampton were the main beneficiaries.
Saints no longer have any senior team members in the treatment room and are only missing Rodriguez and Gardos who lack match fitness and Wanyama for today's game.
Chelsea on the other hand are without their captain, leader, legend and massive liability against the pace of Mane, John Terry. Perhaps more of a miss will be Kurt Zouma.
Depending on other results, Chelsea could end the weekend as high as 9th or as low as 14th while our boys can only rise or fall one spot.
Many on TV said that we would miss Mourinho when he goes. That the league needs personalities. Whilst writing this preview it has only just dawned on me how much I haven't missed him. His pissy antics and bizarre theories took away from the game we all love and the league is richer without him. Shame Man Utd are about to bring him back.
To the predictions:
Well, well, well. Four correct scores! Including 3 points for the newcomer Paul.
"It's a very hard game to call as I don't see too much between the sides. I'll go for a 1-1 draw with Gary Cahill scoring the first goal."
"Hiddink has not lost a domestic game since he took over before Christmas, but extending that record will not be easy because Saints are not conceding goals and will be full of confidence."
"I think I'm going to go for a frustrating 0-1 loss to Chelsea. Guus Hiddink's men are starting to step it up a gear and I fear Southampton will face Chelsea at the worst time in typical Saints fashion."
"0-2 Chelsea; just feel that they will be too strong for Saints. Costa and Willian to score."
"1-2 to them. We'll take the lead but Chelsea will come back with Willian the architect"
"I'm going with 1-1. I'll be the optimistic one."
"To catch up in a prediction league, you must go against the grain. 2-1 Saints."
"Saints are the robot, the box our european dreams. The man acting like a Chelsea fan on the paris metro obviously represents Chelsea. Hazard one nil."
"Sadly I think the clean sheet streak will come to an end at the hands of Diego Costa. Saints to score thanks to Sadio Mané in a ding-dong encounter."