Liverpool vs. Southampton Odds, Picks & Prediction For Saturday’s Premier League Match
Nick Taylor/Liverpool FC/Liverpool FC via Getty Images. Pictured: Mo Salah.
- Liverpool faces Southampton in Premier League action on Saturday afternoon.
- The Reds have surprisingly struggled since last season, but the Saints have also seen struggles of their own.
- Check out Anthony Dabbundo's betting guide complete with a full breakdown, updated odds and a pick below.
Liverpool vs. Southampton Odds
|Over/Under||3.5 (+123 / -152)|
|Day | Time||Saturday | 3:15 p.m. ET|
|How To Watch||Peacock Premium|
|Odds updated Friday afternoon via DraftKings.|
Southampton doesn’t have much left to play for this season as the Saints are safe from relegation but nowhere near qualification in Europe next season.
Meanwhile, Liverpool welcomes the Saints to Anfield on Saturday in desperate need of three points to close the gap on Chelsea and Leicester City for the final two spots in the top four race.
You could make an argument that no two teams have been more impacted in the league by injuries and overall inability to press as effectively during COVID-19 as these two.
Managers Jurgen Klopp and Ralph Hasenhuttl are from the same school of pressing styles and counter-pressing setups. Both took their clubs to excellent new highs last year pre-COVID but have dealt with injuries in defense (Liverpool) and midfield (Southampton) this year.
Both teams are much lower in the PL table than they anticipated as the season reaches the home stretch. That makes this matchup all the more intriguing, given that the Saints won the reverse fixture in December and haven’t shown signs of preparing for the holiday offseason early.
Liverpool needs the win, but the Saints’ defense has some ways to make it difficult for the Reds to break them down.
Liverpool has been the most profitable fade in the Premier League all year. They’ve battled injuries, regression and bad luck all at the same time, and the result is a potential finish outside of Europe’s top four. The Reds likely need to win at least four of their final five to make it to next season’s Champions League.
The injury issue is what it is at this point, and facing a Southampton press without top-choice center backs is suboptimal. The Saints will try to force errors, pounce on heavy touches and poor passes and create havoc within the game.
It’s easy to see how the Saints could create chances on the break against a Liverpool side that has struggled to defend. Left back Andy Robertson is out of gas based on his recent form. Trent Alexander-Arnold has struggled defensively all year.
The Reds haven’t been nearly as press-resistant this year as they were last year. Only Man City and Chelsea dealt with pressure better last year, and this year, the Reds have fallen to sixth.
Off the ball, both Liverpool and Southampton are two of the best at preventing opponents to complete passes and applying ball pressure. But in a world where pressing everywhere is down and slow-paced passing and ball progression has been effective, this could prove to be a sloppy game full of gaps in defense, spaces in behind and miscues.
Southampton’s press last year was as formidable as any in the top six. It may not have the individual quality of those sides, but Hasenhuttl’s side had an excellent work rate and ball-winning mentality. It proved to be one of the league’s most underrated sides, but its lack of investment has hurt it considerably as injuries have piled up and players have worn down.
The result is an attack struggling to create high xG chances because the press isn’t as good at winning the ball high up the pitch. The team still presses quite a bit and when effective can really smush bad teams, but it hasn’t been able to hold off some of the upper mid-table sides it had so much success against last year. It ranks 13th in my power ratings, 15th in xG difference per 90 and is rapidly falling in FiveThirtyEight’s SPI ratings.
All that being said, the Saints have fallen too far in the market for this line to be right.
Saints created 1.8 xG vs. City, 1.0 vs. Brighton and 1.1 vs. Leicester with 10 men. Their attack has improved in recent week,s and they’ve shown no signs of quitting despite running into five of the league’s six best teams in a two-month stretch.
If there are signs that Southampton is already hitting the beaches with five unimportant games left, they aren’t showing up in the numbers.
Betting Analysis & Pick
My projections show a line of Liverpool -1.23, so I will gladly take the full 1.5 goals at plus-money.
There are reasons to think the Reds will have one eye on their Thursday match with rivals Manchester United, while Southampton hasn’t shown that it has quit or is running less in recent match weeks despite not having much to play for.
The line is inflated because Liverpool needs the points in the top-four race, and the market has wrongly soured on the Saints’ overall quality.
Liverpool may well win this game, but Southampton is my biggest edge of the weekend in the league, and I’ll take the Saints to make this competitive. If they sit deeper and are willing to absorb pressure, it will be difficult for the Reds to break them down, much like Leicester struggled last week.
Pick: Southampton +1.5 (-110 or better)