Southampton will welcome Brentford at St. Mary's Stadium when the Premier League returns to action on Tuesday night.

This will be the sides' first-ever top-flight meeting and it was originally scheduled to take place on December 18, but was eventually postponed due to a covid outbreak in Brentford. 

The Bees defeated Southampton in their last meeting – a 2-0 victory at St Mary's in the second round of the 2020-21 Carabao Cup. All in all, Brentford emerged victorious from their last two visits to St Mary's – in the League Cup (September 2020) and League One (December 2010) respectively. 

Southampton Betting Preview (+102 @ BetOnline)

Unbeaten in four matches across all competitions, The Saints will play their first League game of the calendar year and should be fairly confident after four consecutive Premier League clashes with London sides. 

Following a 3-0 loss at Arsenal one month ago, Southampton earned a 2-2 draw at Crystal Palace and also won 3-2 at West Ham United on Boxing Day before a 1-1 home draw with Antonio Conte's Tottenham last time out, though the Saints were down to 10 men from the first-half. 

Southampton survived a real goal thriller on their trip to south Wales at the weekend as the Saints were down to 10 men early into the game, yet they still did enough to emerge victorious (3-2) at an empty Swansea.com Stadium.

Yan Valery was sent off in the first half and Southampton lasted 90 minutes with 10 men. The situation went from bad to worse early into extra time when Jan Bednarek's own goal gave the Swans a 2-1 lead, yet Mohamed Elyounoussi restored parity seconds later and Shane Long struck on the break to give Southampton a hard-fought 3-2 victory.

It was Southampton's first game of the year – since a 1-1 home draw with Tottenham on December 28 – as their home match against Newcastle has been called off. 

Veteran Shane Long, who will turn 35 later this month, scored the winner at Swansea and it was the Irishman's first goal since last February, when he scored against another Welsh side – Cardiff City – during his loan spell at Bournemouth. Moreover, it was Long's first goal in a Southampton jersey in almost two years – when he opened the scoring in a 2-0 Premier League home win over Aston Villa in February 2020. 

Halfway into the season, Southampton has won just four of their 19 games so far and has the joint-most draws in the English top-flight (9). 

Southampton's resilience on home soil has seen them string together a six-game unbeaten run at St Mary's in the Premier League. The Saints may have won only two of their 9 home games this term, but on the other hand, have lost only one of them and have conceded eight goals only. 

Ralph Hasenhüttl will head into Tuesday night’s rearranged clash with Thomas Franks’ Bees without a natural right-back with teenage revelation Tino Livramento injured and the suspended Yan Valery joining Kyle Walker-Peters on the sidelines.

Walker-Peters and Valery are expected to be ready in time for the trip to Wolverhampton next weekend, but Livramento could be set for a lengthy spell on the sidelines. The Saints boss must now wait and see whether or not his first-choice right-back will need surgery after picking up a meniscus (knee) injury. 

Captain James Ward-Prowse once again proved he can be trusted anywhere and could play at right-back again on Tuesday night. His cross for Shane Long's late winner was delicious, yet Ward-Prowse will be eager to score in a fourth consecutive Premier League game for the first time ever. 

The Saints were already without the likes of Alex McCarthy, Mohammed Salisu, Tino Livramento, Kyle Walker-Peters, Moussa Djenepo, Thierry Small, Che Adams, and Will Smallbone for one reason or another in Wales, and Hasenhuttl stated that his squad was stretched to the limit.

However, there is some good news as Ralph Hasenhüttl has confirmed Ché Adams will be available for selection as the Scotland forward has completed his isolation period, while Mohammed Salisu served his suspension and is also in contention for the Premier League match with Brentford on Tuesday. 

Adams' availability means that Adam Armstrong could make way for the Scottish forward, who is expected to start along with Albanian striker Armando Broja upfront.

Brentford Betting Preview (+290 @ BetOnline)

After a run of three consecutive defeats around Christmas, Brentford returned to winning ways with a 2-1 home win over Aston Villa on January 2, followed by a comfortable 4-1 win at Port Vale in the FA Cup on Saturday. 

The Bees are doing relatively fine on their debut Premier League campaign as Thomas Frank's side already collected 23 points. However, they still need to not get too carried away as the comfortable twelve-point lead they currently hold over 17-th place Burnley could be reduced in the coming weeks. 

Brentford are also doing well on their away games, losing just three of their nine matches away from the Brentford Community Stadium, yet winning only two of them. 

Bryan Mbeumo was brought on as a second-half substitute against Port Vale at the weekend and had an instant impact, scoring a hat-trick to inspire his side's progress into the FA Cup fourth round.

With David Raya still out injured, Álvaro Fernández is expected to remain in goal, though Jonas Lossl started at the weekend. 

Midfielder Frank Onyeka joined Nigeria for the Africa Cup of Nations and Thomas Frank will hope to have Mathias Jensen available for selection on Tuesday night. If Jensen is not ready to play, Shandon Baptiste and Vitaly Janelt should start either side of Christian Nörgaard in the middle of the park. 

As Thomas Frank revealed on Monday afternoon: Tuesday's clash with Southampton will come too soon for Rico Henry and Zanka, but Mathias Jensen and Sergi Canos will be available. 

Defenders Julian Jeanvier, Charlie Goode, and left-back Josh Dasilva are all sidelined through injury, but Norwegian center-back Kristoffer Ajer made his first appearance since late October and provides more options. However, Ajer may have to settle for a place on the bench here as Denmark's Mads Bech Sorensen has been doing well over the festive period and could keep his starting berth alongside Ethan Pinnock and skipper Pontus Jansson in Brentford’s back three.

Possible Starting Lineups of Southampton and Brentford 

Southampton: Fraser Forster – James Ward-Prowse, Jan Bednarek, Mohammed Salisu, Romain Perraud – Mohamed Elyounoussi, Ibrahima Diallo, Oriol Romeu, Nathan Redmond – Che Adams, Armando Broja. (4-4-2) 

Brentford: Álvaro Fernández – Ethan Pinnock, Pontus Jansson, Mads Bech Sörensen – Mads Roerslev Rasmussen, Vitaly Janelt, Christian Nörgaard, Shandon Baptiste, Sergi Canós – Ivan Toney, Bryan Mbeumo. (3-5-2)

Spooky Express Betting Prediction 

Thomas Frank's men haven't won away from home in the Premier League since early October – a dramatic 2-1 win at West Ham right before the October international break – and The Bees will try to conquer St. Mary's. 

Brentford suffered a 2-0 defeat on their last trip to the south coast when they lost 2-0 at Brighton on Boxing Day, but it was a game that would be remembered for the number of crucial saves made by Brighton goalkeeper Robert Sanchez.

This time, tough, we expect both sides to fight to continue their recent upsurge of form so expect goals at both ends.

Spooky Express Free Play: Both teams to score – Yes -130 @ BetOnline for 7/10 Units

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