Southampton vs. Chelsea: Preview and TV schedule

Julian Finney

Chelsea face a tough test away at Southampton on New Year's Day.

Southampton's excellent start to the season may have waned in recent weeks, though they still have only lost twice in front of their own fans in the Premier League this season. Mauricio Pocchettino's side went down 2-1 to Everton on the weekend, though had bounced back from a winless run of six games by seeing off Cardiff City 3-0 on Boxing Day. They're now sitting ninth in the table, though will no doubt prove to be a tough test for Chelsea on Wednesday.

The Blues suffered a shock defeat away at St. Mary's last season, and have been patchy on the road this campaign. They've won just three of their nine league games away from Stamford Bridge, though their home form has been enough to see them move to within a couple of points of league leaders Arsenal heading into the New Year. Southampton certainly have the potential to cause them problems, though Chelsea are still clear favourites for this one.

The Saints aren't helped by the absence of first-teamers Artur Boruc and Victor Wanyama through injury, while Gastón Ramírez could start in place of Pablo Osvaldo, who is hoping to recover from an illness in time to be available. For Chelsea, Frank Lampard and Branislav Ivanović are the most significant injury absentees, while David Luiz misses out through suspension.

Southampton injuries and suspensions

Out: Artur Boruc (hand), Victor Wanyama (leg), Guly do Prado (knee). In doubt: Pablo Osvaldo (illness).

Chelsea injuries and suspensions

Out: Marco van Ginkel (knee), Frank Lampard (muscle), Branislav Ivanović (knee), David Luiz (suspended). In doubt: None.

Projected lineups

Southampton: Kelvin Davies; Luke Shaw, Jose Fonte, Dejan Lovren, Nathaniel Clyne; Jack Cork, Morgan Schneiderlin; Adam Lallana, Gastón Ramírez, Jay Rodriguez; Rickie Lambert.

Chelsea: Petr Čech; Ashley Cole, John Terry, Gary Cahill, Cesar Azpilicueta; Ramires, John Obi Mikel; Eden Hazard, Juan Mata, André Schürrle; Fernando Torres.

Match Date/Time: Wednesday, 3 p.m. local, 10 a.m. ET

Venue: St. Mary's Stadium, Southampton, England

TV: NBC Sports Network (U.S.), TSN (Canada), BT Sport 1 (U.K.)

Online: NBC Sports Live Extra (U.S.), BT Sport 1 (U.K.)

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