Former Arsenal player Paul Merson says Southampton are capable of adding to Chelsea’s misery when they take on the Blues in the Premier League.
Ralph Hasenhuttl’s Saints host the Blues at St Mary’s today (Saturday), with Thomas Tuchel’s side looking to bounce back from back-to-back defeats against Brentford and Real Madrid in recent days.
Tuchel has said that Chelsea were “far from the standard required” when they faced Real Madrid in the first leg of their Champions League quarter-final tie on Wednesday and warned his players they would lose to Southampton if they played like that again.
And former Arsenal forward Merson has offered his thoughts on Chelsea and Southampton ahead of the game, adding that he feels Saints are capable of causing further problems for Tuchel’s men.
However, he is not predicting a win for Southampton, who are without a victory in five games in all competitions, with Merson instead forecasting a 1-1 draw on the south coast as he gave his opinion in his weekly predictions feature for SportsKeeda.
What a week it’s been for Chelsea, they are in serious disarray after losses against Brentford and Real Madrid across two competitions,” he said. “Southampton are a half-decent team and will always have a go regardless of who they face, so I think they can compound Chelsea’s misery this weekend.
The Blues will have one eye on the second leg at the Santiago Bernabeu, and I don’t think that tie is over yet. The first goal matters and the fact that the away goal rule has been scrapped will work to Chelsea’s advantage. If they score first in Spain, it’s game on.
“At the moment Chelsea are safe in third place, but if they drop points once again and Arsenal beat Brighton, it could turn out to be a problem for them. Spurs also have a decent run coming up, so you never know.”