Are Southampton Sleepwalking into Relegation?

The Premier League relegation betting market is wide open and there are a number of seemingly established top-flight clubs who have underwhelmed this season and as a result, they’ve been left nervously glancing over their shoulders. West Brom are in dire straits and look destined for the Championship but could they be joined by Southampton?

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Source: Dave Stephens via Twitter

Southampton are currently 7/2 in the football betting markets to suffer relegation this season. At the beginning of the August, very few would have predicted that the Saints would find themselves in such as perilous position. They have flown under the radar for the majority of the campaign but Mauricio Pellegrino’s side have failed to spark and some of their aimless and toothless performances could come back to haunt them.

There are a couple of positives: they are in the FA Cup semifinals and also possess the tenth best defence in the division but those disgruntled season ticket holders at St.Marys certainly haven’t had much else to smile about. They’ve scored just 29 times in 28 games this season and have the second-worst home form in the league, winning just three times on the South Coast. November 26, 2017 was the last time they managed to secure three points in front of their own fans, when putting four past a then-hapless Everton side.  

Charlie Austin is barely able to string a run of games together, Shane Long works hard but lacks composure, whilst Manolo Gabbiadini is a hugely streaky player and only scores in runs. Dusan Tadic has failed to make an impact whilst the undoubtedly talented Nathan Redmond has been in and out of the team all season. Fans have questioned manager Mauricio Pellegrino and his overly defensive tactics have failed to win the hearts of many supporters.

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Source: News Handle via Twitter

The former Alaves boss was drafted in to replace the out-going Claude Puel who was deemed ‘boring’ despite guiding the side to a cup final and an eighth-placed finish in the Premier League. Southampton kept 14 clean sheets last season, they’ve only managed five between August 2017 and March 2018. The signing of Guido Carillo was supposed to spark a revival in the club’s fortunes but £19 million later and he has failed to make his mark on this underachieving side.

Stoke, Swansea, Huddersfield and Crystal Palace are also prominent in the relegation betting market but Southampton certainly look to provide the value. The Terriers do have goalscorers in their side and are effective at home whilst the Swans have notably improved since the appointment of Carlos Carvalhal. Stoke are tougher to beat under Paul Lambert and possess the mercurial Xherdan Shaqiri who has the potential to be a match-winner. Palace have an ongoing injury crisis and are in a run of difficult games but the team are clearly battling for Roy Hodgson. This leaves Southampton…

The Saints are lacking characters and their supporters are feeling sceptical about Pellegrino’s ability to turn things around in Hampshire. They are one of just seven Premier League clubs who haven’t changed their manager this season and the 46-year old could be considered extremely lucky to have avoided the chop. At a value price of 7/2, Southampton’s current form suggests that they are drifting into a relegation scrap and look like a decent betting proposition. They need to roll their sleeves up and start battling their way out of the mire but it seems doubtful that they will have the tools required for a last-minute rescue mission.

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