Watford v Southampton preview: Saints in need of morale-boosting win at Vicarage Road
Last Updated: 13/01/18 1:51pm
Both Watford and Southampton head into the weekend low on confidence and in need of three points as they meet at Vicarage Road.
Watford have found points hard to come by of late with only one victory in their last nine games - against Leicester City on Boxing Day, although they have dropped just two places in the Premier League during that period.
The Saints, though, are winless in their last nine outings, a dreadful run which has poured the pressure on manager Mauricio Pellegrino.
Watford won the reverse fixture 2-0 at St Mary's in September when Abdoulaye Doucoure and Daryl Janmaat scored - this was the visitors' only victory in the last six top-flight meetings between the two.
Watford captain Troy Deeney is available to face the Saints having served a four-game ban.
However, head coach Marco Silva remains without the inured Younes Kaboul, Craig Cathcart, Isaac Success, Miguel Britos, Kiko Femenia, Will Hughes and Nathaniel Chalobah.
Southampton, meanwhile, could welcome back defenders Wesley Hoedt, Cedric Soares and Jeremy Pied at Vicarage Road.
Hoedt (concussion), Soares (hamstring) and Pied (leg) have all returned to training and their fitness will be assessed before kick-off.
Striker Charlie Austin, though, remains on the sidelines with a hamstring problem.
Watford's only home Premier League victory against Southampton came in their very first such meeting against them - winning 3-2 back in December 1999 (D1 L1 since).
Saints haven't lost both league meetings against Watford in a season since the 2007-08 Championship campaign.
There have been 34 goals scored in the last eight meetings between these sides at Vicarage Road in all competitions (19 for Watford, 15 for Southampton), at an average of over four per game.
Watford have lost six of their last seven Premier League games, winning the other against Leicester.
Wow, another tough one! Watford are on a glass mountain with moccasin slippers! They were on the verge of the top four not too long ago and now, if they lose this game, they are really in trouble. If you take away that win against Leicester they would be in deep trouble. Given the form of these two sides, either of them could win and you wouldn't be shocked, but I'm going for a draw.
PAUL PREDICTS: 1-1 (9/2 with Sky Bet)