Nathan Jones’ appointment at Southampton hasn’t had the desired impact. Southampton’s form is dire ahead of this League Cup clash with Manchester City.
This fixture might not be a priority for Pep Guardiola with a Manchester derby looming at the weekend, but we can still expect a strong team from the defending Premier League champions.
For Southampton, avoiding a heavy defeat has to be the primary goal here.
A further hit to their confidence would have more significant repercussions for their season beyond being eliminated from this competition.
Win To Nil: Manchester City
Amid six consecutive Premier League defeats, the League Cup has provided some respite for Southampton.
Beating Sheffield Wednesday and Lincoln is not the same as facing Manchester City, however, and it is hard to see how the home team are competitive in this match.
They were thumped four goals to nil when the teams met at the Etihad Stadium earlier this season. Look for this fixture to follow a similar pattern, with City dominating possession and carving Southampton open at will.
Anytime Goalscorer: Julian Alvarez
This fixture seems a good opportunity for Guardiola to give Erling Haaland a rest. The Manchester derby on Saturday is the priority for City in their efforts to chase down Arsenal.
Julian Alvarez has been a great deputy for the Norwegian thus far and performed superbly for Argentina in Qatar.
Despite only eight starts at club level this season, Alvarez already has eight goals to his name. He is a great price to get on the scoresheet here.
Total Goals: Over 3.5
Three of Southampton’s last five league matches have gone over 3.5 total goals. The opponents have done most of the scoring, and that is how this match is expected to play out.
There have been some lower-scoring fixtures involving City of late, but they are no strangers to a heavy win.
All odds are subject to change