Southampton (+240) at Leicester City (+120) (Draw +220)
It’s proving impossible to rouse Leicester City from its dream season. The Foxes kept right on rolling last weekend with a 1-0 win over Crystal Palace, keeping them five points clear in the race for the EPL title. This Sunday (March 27, 8:30 AM Eastern), they’ll welcome Southampton to King Power Stadium.
The win over Palace was the third straight for Leicester and their fourth in five matches. Riyad Mahrez notched the lone goal of the game (his 17th of the year) in the 34th minute. Getting the full three was crucial as second-place Tottenham held serve, routing Bournemouth 3-0 (home).
With just seven games remaining, Leicester’s lead is looking safer and safer. They’re a full 11 points up on third-place Arsenal, and Tottenham have a tough road to hoe; Spurs face Liverpool at Anfield this weekend, and still have matches with Man United and Chelsea on the schedule.
That said, Leicester’s remaining games are equally tough; they have away dates with United and Chelsea, and also host West Ham. That makes it imperative for the Foxes to keep claiming wins against mediocre opponents.
Southampton aren’t an elite team, but nor do they really fit the “mediocre” tag either. The Saints are seventh in the table on 47 points (13-8-10), just four shy of the Champions League spots.
They dropped back-to-back games to Chelsea (2-1 home) and Bournemouth (2-0 away) a few weeks ago, but responded by going 2-1-0 over their last three. Their 3-2 (home) win over Liverpool last time out vaulted them past the Reds in the table. Sadio Mane had a brace in the win, including the winner in the 86th minute as Southampton rallied from a 2-0 halftime deficit.
The teams drew their first meeting of the season, 2-2, in Southampton back in October. The Saints bring some momentum to this one and still have a lot to play for, but I’m finished doubting the Foxes for now. I’ll take the home side, even though there’s not much value.
Pick: Leicester (+120).
(Photo credit: Whassuo (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)], via Wikimedia Commons. Photo has been cropped.)
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