PREM: Sunderland v Southampton preview

Sunderland v Southampton preview

Southampton will be without Sofiane Boufal when they visit Sunderland in the Premier League on Saturday.

The Moroccan international suffered an ankle injury during the Saints' 3-1 home defeat to West Ham last weekend, the club's sixth loss in seven matches.

They travel to relegation-threatened Sunderland, who thrashed Crystal Palace 4-0 at Selhurst Park last Saturday to record their first win since mid-December.

The victory has given the Black Cats a big boost in their battle for survival, with just two points separating bottom of the table Sunderland and Middlesbrough in 15th.

Adnan Januzaj (hip) and John O'Shea (hamstring) should both be fit after recovering from injuries suffered against Palace.

Jack Rodwell (hamstring) will not be available, although David Moyes is optimistic the midfielder will not miss more than a few weeks. Jordan Pickford (knee) has returned to light training but Saturday is too soon for a return.

Boufal's absence for Southampton, which could yet extend to the EFL Cup final against Manchester United on February 26, further weakens a squad already missing defender Virgil van Dijk, also because of an ankle injury.

Nathan Redmond is pushing for a first-team recall having appeared as a substitute in last week's defeat to the Hammers.

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