This season under Claude Puel, Southampton can look either formidable or flimsy, not something you’d readily associate with the Saints ever since their promotion to the Premier League.
Much to the frustration to those on the south coast, they are slowly looking as inconsistent as top flight teams come, a departure from the solidity that largely defined the tenures of Mauricio Pochettino and Ronald Koeman.
While Puel has had the team playing well and picking up some big scalps this season, you get the feeling their clash with Middlesbrough on Sunday is a key game.
He needs a big performance against a well put together visiting outfit and currently has just one win in his last five domestic games.
Perhaps the biggest frustration to the St. Mary’s faithful is the fact they could just as easily roll over to the Teesiders as turn Boro over themselves, with their Europa League game a few days before barely ideal preparation.
Still, with that in mind, here’s the XI for Saints to return to form and smash Boro this Sunday.
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