|Everton 2 v 1 Southampton|
Barclays Premier League
Saturday, 18th August 2018 Kick-off 15:00
Saints At Everton The Preview
Friday, 17th Aug 2018 08:00
Can Saints win at Goodison Park for the first time in 27 years or will it be another afternoon of frustration on Merseyside
Saints suffered heartbreak at Goodison three months ago in what looked like a terminal blow when the Toffee's equalised deep into injury time, but they used the setback to stir them on to superhuman effort in going to Swansea and winning a few days later.
Can they now use this game to kick start the season and banish those negative times over the last 12 months.
Mark Hughes though has to consider first what formation to play whether to stay with three at the back and then who to play in it, also whether perhaps he has to be a little bit more defensive minded.
Some good players didn't get a game last week and does he put in the likes of Pierre Emile Hojbjerg or James Ward Prowse and does he start Danny Ings or hold him in reserve.
The good news is that Hughes now has a revamped squad and has options in all areas.
Rome wasn't built in a day though and for now it's about getting a good solid start to the season and taking it from there.
For me I would go back to a flat back four with Cedric, Hoedt, Vestergaard and Bertrand.
I would have a good solid midfield trio perming three from the four of Romeu, Lemina, Armstrong and Hojbjerg, I would play Redmond and JWP as the wide pairing and then their is the dilemma up front.
Is Austin mobile enough, is Gabbiadini strong enough and is Ing's quite fit enough, that is the question for Hughes.
All in all though its a good dilemma for the manager and again he should have a strong bench to change things if they don't go right.
Like last season we have to dig in earn the right to play and impose ourselves on the game, then we have to win it and unlike last year concentrate not to the very last minute but to the final whistle.
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