Southampton will be without top scorer Danny Ings when Newcastle United make the long trip south for Friday evening's Premier League offering.
The Saints could go top of the Premier League if they beat the Geordies, having gone five games unbeaten since losing their opening two.
They’ll have to do it without Ings though, who suffered a knee injury against Aston Villa which is set to keep him out for between four and six weeks. It’s a massive blow to Ralph Hassenhuttl, as Ings has netted more than a third of Southampton’s goals this season. Shane Long and Michael Obafemi are on hand to step into his starting role, while Theo Walcott is another option.
Ings isn’t the only one missing though, as Southampton aim to patch up their side after suffering a bruising encounter with Aston Villa. Jan Bednarek fell heavily under an aerial challenge and is expected to miss out through the Premier League’s concussion protocol. Hassenhuttl also confirmed left-back Ryan Bertrand is also likely to miss out with a thigh injury.
Ibrahima Diallo has a dead leg from a challenge and will also be sidelined, while Mohamed Salisu is training but not expected to be fit enough for the visit of Newcastle, according to his manager.
Newcastle on the other hand are getting a few names back to fitness, having suffered plenty of injury worries in the opening seven games.
Matty Longstaff, Paul Dummett and Ciaran Clark are all fit for selection after long-term issues, leaving just Dwight Gayle, Martin Dubravka, Jonjo Shelvey and Matt Ritchie on the treatment table.
Longstaff’s elder brother Sean has taken the place of Shelvey recently, after the former Swansea man underwent hernia surgery, and is expected to continue alongside Jeff Hendrick and Miguel Almiron in midfield, after the trio played in the win over Everton last weekend.
Callum Wilson will go in search of his seventh goal of the season, as he aims to put the disappointment of missing out on Gareth Southgate’s England squad behind him. There were also calls for Karl Darlow to join the national team, but the England boss explained that in his opinion, no one is pushing his current crop of keepers enough.
A win for Newcastle would send them third in the table ahead of Saturday and Sunday’s games, and keep their unbeaten away run going, having not suffered an away defeat yet this season.
Southampton vs Newcastle United at St Mary’s is on Friday, November 6th. Kick-off is at 8pm.