The Saints are currently 19th in the league standings.
Southampton’s new boss Ralph Hasenhuttl will face a tough test against Arsenal in the Premier League as he looks forward to his first game at the St. Mary’s Stadium on Sunday. The Austrian who took charge of the club after the sacking of Mark Hughes a fortnight ago, faced a 1-0 defeat away at Cardiff City in his first game.
Ahead of the game on Sunday, Hasenhuttl spoke about how his side will have an important task to end their ongoing 10-game winless streak against the in-form Gunners. He talked particularly about ‘cutting off the supply line’ to Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang– Arsenal’s star forward. The former RB Leipzig and Ingolstadt boss knows the striker from his days back in Germany when he used to play for Borussia Dortmund. In his time in the Bundesliga, the Gabon international has scored six times against Hasenhuttl’s teams.
“He (Aubameyang) has a lot of qualities and therefore we have to work as a team. It will depend on how much pressure we put on guys that want to pass to him,” said the 51-year-old.
“Maybe don’t give too much time to these guys to put the perfect pass then it’s easier to defend his qualities- his speed, his heading in the box. That is our goal to defend him and the rest of the team. But as everyone knows, he doesn’t need a lot of chances to score,” he added.
Meanwhile, Aubameyang has been in a great form for the Gunners this season as he is the joint-top scorer in the league with 10 goals, along with Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah and also has three assists. Having started 14 games this season in the league, the former Saint Etienne and AS Monaco player has found himself as a regular starter this season under Unai Emery. He will have a key role to play for the Gunners as they are currently on a 22-game unbeaten streak across all competitions and are currently placed fifth in the league, equal on points with fourth-placed Chelsea.
On the other hand, the Saints are not having a very good time as they stand as low as 19th in the table equal on points with bottom-placed Fulham. Moreover, the club has seen four managers being replaced since the last two years and are currently under the threat of relegation. With Hassenhuttl’s recent appointment, the Saints hope that he will bring the club back to its winning ways.