After Saints’ 3-0 win over Norwich City on Friday, the squad has much to look forward to in their Thursday match against Arsenal.
Arsenal dropped three points to 15th-placed Brighton Saturday, after a 95th minute goal by Neal Maupay put the Seagulls ahead. The Gunners also lost their starting goalkeeper Bernd Leno to a serious knee injury before the half at AMEX Stadium, a serious blow to the side.
Thoughts with Bernd Leno, absolutely awful injury similar to Zouma a few years back, will be out for some time pic.twitter.com/cgpxLg4dXJ— Danny MCFC OK x (@MCFCDanny1894) June 20, 2020
With seven clean sheets on the season, Leno was a fairly positive aspect of Arsenal’s side that has somewhat struggled so far in the interrupted 2019/20 Premier League campaign.
Currently sitting 13th in the league and only three points behind the London side, Saints could make a statement with a win at St. Mary’s.
The last time the two clubs met was at the Emirates, which saw Southampton taking a point home in a 2-2 draw with goals from Danny Ings and James Ward-Prowse.
Southampton were unlucky not to escape North London with three points, as Alexander Lacazette scored for the Gunners in the 96th minute to draw level.
In the last six games, Arsenal have come away with 10 points, while Saints have come away with 6. But with the extended hiatus from the COVID-19 crisis taking place, this weekend’s matches are likely the best sign of each club’s current fitness. If these games are any sign of what’s to come, it could be quite the game in an empty St. Mary’s on Thursday evening.
Leno joins a list of Arsenal players dealing with injury issues. There are up to five players who are potentially or confirmed to be unable to face Saints, including Lucas Torreira, Granit Xhaka, Sokratis, and Southampton’s loanee Cedric Soares.