PREMIER LEAGUE WEEKEND GUIDE: Can Arsenal respond against Southampton?

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Although there will also be much focus on the FA Cup this weekend, there are some hugely important games in the Premier League.

The race to finish in the top four continues, with Tottenham kicking off the weekend’s action at home to Brighton. Arsenal can’t afford to slip up away to Southampton, while Manchester United need a morale-boosting win against Norwich.

On Sunday Burnley begin life after Sean Dyche with a trip to face West Ham, who are still hopeful of getting into the top four. 

Sportsmail’s Lewis Steele provides his guide to this weekend’s action. 

Arsenal face Southampton as they look to get back on track in the quest to finish in the top four

Arsenal face Southampton as they look to get back on track in the quest to finish in the top four

TOTTENHAM V BRIGHTON

Tottenham: Matt Doherty’s season has finished, according to boss Antonio Conte. No fresh injury worries.

Out: J Tanganga, M Doherty (both knee), O Skipp (groin).

Brighton: Steven Alzate has an illness and Shane Duffy is ‘struggling’. Enock Mwepu is likely to start again.

Out: J Moder (knee), S Alzate (illness). Doubt: S Duffy (thigh).

Tottenham have won all four home clashes with Brighton in the Premier League. Harry Kane has more assists (seven) in 2022 than he managed in the entirety of 2021 (five) in the league. Albion are unbeaten on all five of their league trips to London this season.

MANCHESTER UNITED V NORWICH 

Manchester United: Luke Shaw faces a month out. The other injured players have not recovered. 

Out: L Shaw (calf), E Cavani (shin), R Varane (knock), S McTominay (foot). Doubt: Fred (hip). 

Norwich: Billy Gilmour is back, but Brandon Williams can’t face parent club.

Out: B Williams (ineligible), J Sargent (ankle), O Kabak (hamstring), A Omobamidele (back), A Idah (knee).

Norwich boss Dean Smith won at Old Trafford earlier this season with Aston Villa. No manager has ever won there with two teams in the same season. United have lost two of their last four home games against a team starting the day bottom of the league table.

SOUTHAMPTON V ARSENAL

Southampton: Ralph Hasenhuttl says he has a fully-fit squad available, with ‘one or two smaller issues’ in training. 

Doubt: S Long (ankle), A McCarthy, Lyanco (hamstring). 

Arsenal: ‘Good possibility’ Alex Lacazette will play after missing training for ‘private reasons’. 

Out: T Tomiyasu (calf), K Tierney (knee), T Partey (thigh). Doubt: A Lacazette (personal).

Three of the last seven times a team have lost by six or more goals in the Premier League, Saints have been the victims. They have scored the first goal in seven of their last 11 meetings with Arsenal but have only gone on to win one of those, 3-2 in December 2018. 

WATFORD V BRENTFORD

Watford: Cucho Hernandez might not play again this season, a big blow.

Out: K Baah (ankle), Cucho H (hamstring). Doubt: W T-Ekong (hamstring), F Sierralta (calf).

Brentford: Pontus Jansson and Josh Dasilva have recovered from injury and illness. Few team changes likely after four wins in last five games.

Out: F Onyeka (ankle).
 

Watford have lost nine games in a row at home in the Premier League. The last team to lose 10 in a row were Sunderland in 2005. Brentford are winless in their last seven visits to Watford.

NEWCASTLE V LEICESTER

Newcastle: Joe Willock is available for selection, though Ryan Fraser will miss out.

Out: K Trippier (ankle), C Wilson (calf), R Fraser (thigh), I Hayden (knee), J Lewis (groin). 

Leicester: No casualties from win in Eindhoven, though a couple of fatigue-related changes are expected.

Out: J Vardy, D Ward, R Bertrand, W Ndidi (all knee), B Soumare (groin).

Newcastle have won each of their last four home games in the league, as many as they had in their previous 24 at St James’ Park. Leicester have won on their last five trips to Newcastle. 

WEST HAM V BURNLEY

West Ham: No fresh injury worries but there might be some changes after midweek glory in Lyon.

Out: K Zouma (ankle), A Ogbonna (knee)

Burnley: Ben Mee is injured but will return to the Clarets bench in his new player-manager role.

Out: B Mee (calf), E Pieters (knee), J B Gudmundsson (calf).

In nine games on the weekend after European matches, West Ham have won just three. Burnley have conceded at least twice in their last six Premier League games (14 goals in total).

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