CONFIRMED: Sunderland & Southampton line-ups

Here is how Sunderland and Southampton will line-up for this afternoon’s match:

Sunderland starting XI: Mannone, Bardsley, Alonso, O’Shea, Brown, Cattermole, Larsson, Johnson, Ki, Altidore, Borini

Subs: Celustka, Pickford, Colback, Roberge, Gardner, Fletcher, Giaccherini

Southampton starting XI: Boruc, Shaw, Chambers, Lovren, Fonte, Cork, Schneiderlin, Davis, Lallana, Rodriguez, Lambert

Subs: Davis, Clyne, Yoshida, Ramirez, Warde-Prowse, Guly, Hooiveld

After the headlines declaring imminent doom for Southampton following the departure of Nicola Cortese, the fact their manager Mauricio Pochettino will remain at least until the end of the season has quelled the opportunistic headlines declaring a January fire-sale and subsequent slide down the table.

And while doubts remain over the long-term future of both manager and players, for now the Saints must focus solely on another three points.

They face a Sunderland side who have won their last three matches. That said, the Black Cats are without a home league win since November and today’s visitors will be hoping to build on last week’s victory against West Bromwich Albion.

While the prospect of European qualification is slipping away, Southampton will focus on ensuring the second half of their season is as good as possible, while Sunderland are attempting to wrestle free of one of the tightest relegation scraps in recent memory.

What do you think the result will be this afternoon?

image: © Rach

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