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Southampton vs. Arsenal: Date, Time, Live Stream, TV Info and Preview

LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 15: Santi Cazorla of Arsenal and Jason Puncheon of Southhampton fight for the ball during the Barclays Premier League match between Arsenal and Southampton at Emirates Stadium on September 15, 2012 in London, England.  (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)
Clive Mason/Getty Images
Rick WeinerFeatured ColumnistDecember 29, 2012

On one side you've got Aresnal, a club that sits in seventh place on the Premier League table with 30 points, five points behind Chelsea for a coveted spot in the Top 3.

On the other, you've got Southampton, languishing in 17th place with 16 points on the season, only one point ahead of the dreaded relegation zone.

Needless to say, this New Year's Day Premier League clash doesn't sound all that enticing.

But this is Arsenal, and you can never be sure which squad is going to show up: the one that beat Reading 5-2, or the one that struggled to beat a 17th place Wiggan squad, needing a Mikel Arteta penalty kick to get the 1-0 win.

So when you wake up late on January 1 and aren't quite ready to get yourself out of bed, flip over to this Premier League match that promises to be far more entertaining than the numbers would lead you to believe.

 

Where: The Friends Provident St. Mary's Stadium, Southampton, England

When: Tuesday, January 1 at 12:30 p.m. ET

Watch: ESPN Deportes

Live Stream: WatchESPN

 

What They're Saying

When the two sides last met, Arsenal dominated play from beginning to end, taking the match 6-1 at Ermirates Stadium back in September.

Gunners manager Arsène Wenger believed that Southampton struggled to keep up with Arsenal's pace, as he told Joe Brewin of Arsenal.com:

We played at a high pace with our passing and with a high pace with our movement. We just played at a level above Southampton I think, especially in the first half.

They had problems to cope with the overall speed that we showed. 

Southampton had trouble with that speed with captain Adam Lallana in the lineup.

They might not have him against Arsenal this time around, as the midfielder has been sidelined since early December with a knee injury (h/t The Independent).

If he can't go, keeping up with Arsenal's speed becomes that much more difficult for the Saints.

 

Most Important Player to Watch: Santi Cazorla, Arsenal

Santi Cazorla isn't only one of the best newcomers to the Premier League this season, he's been Arsenal's most explosive player throughout.

Over his last three games, Cazorla has three goals and two assists, taken 12 shots and suffered seven fouls, proving that he's more than only a goal scorer. He leads the Gunners in goals, shots, shots on goal and fouls suffered.

With Arsenal's penchant for goal-scoring slumps coupled with Cazorla's complete, all-around game, there isn't a player on either side in this match who will have as big of an impact on the result than Cazorla.

 

Key Matchup: Ricky Lambert vs. Arsenal Defense

Arsenal opened the Premier League season with a trio of clean sheets until it met the Saints, who scored the first goal of the season against the Gunners back in September.

Since then, Arsenal's defense has allowed 17 goals in 14 Premier League matches, a solid but unspectacular effort.

Ricky Lambert is currently Southampton's leading scorer with seven goals on the season, accounting for more than 30 percent of the Saints' goals in Premier League play.

With Adam Lallana, the Saints other big playmaker, questionable with a knee injury, neutralizing Lambert is a key for the Gunners—and getting him running free on the outside is a key for the Saints.

 

Prediction

Arsenal is 2-1-0 over their last three EPL games, while Southampton has played to a 1-1-1 record. With the Gunners having already downed the Saints once before this season, this match will play out much like the last one did.

Arsenal 4, Southampton 1

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