Stoke v Southampton: Put your house on hosts here

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Stoke extended their unbeaten run to nine games with a comfortable 3-1 win over Liverpool on Boxing Day and it’s difficult to see them doing anything but bringing up double figures with a win when they entertain Southampton.

Their price of 4/5 to claim the spoils at the Britannia, as they have done in four of their last five games, is probably the best bet of the weekend and should not be overlooked.

This price is further boosted by the fact that the relegation-threatened Saints have managed to avoid defeat in just two Premier League away games this season.

These two matches came as part of their last three on the road, yet the bookies should have them at a lot longer odds than 7/2 if they want to snare a few underdog punters.

Southampton always offer the threat of goals with Rickie Lambert leading their line and plenty of talented midfield men laying on service for him. This game will represent the toughest test of their attacking capabilities as Stoke have the Premier League’s meanest defence and you wouldn’t back against them keeping a 10th clean sheet of the season at 5/4.

The Potters win over Liverpool was their first in 44 matches in which they netted more than twice. Clearly, they’re not the most proficient in the final third, which makes the 4/6 for them to score either once or not at all in this one very much worth a punt as well.

What they are adept at, however, is recovering from losing positions on their own patch.

Liverpool became the third team in a row to score the opening goal of the game at the Britannia and not win. This lends value to the 9/5 on offer for the Saints to be the first team on target, as well as the 9/1 that says the hosts will claim the spoils after allowing Nigel Adkins’ men to take the lead.

All odds and markets accurate as of publication’s time and date

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