Bournemouth and Southampton meet at Dean Court in the first League game there for more than 50 years.
With Bournemouth in second place three points behind Saints this is the first of some 6 pointers that these clubs face over the coming weeks as the promotion race hots up.
Both sets of fans have been bigging up their clubs and it could be a very intense game with the atmosphere at DC crackling.
Neither club will be happy with a defeat though a Cherries defeat could prove to be the most damaging.
A draw will do neither club a favour as Huddersfield and Peterborough both have seemingly easier games and could take full advantage.
Eddie Mitchell the Bournemouth chairman said about our game, “If they think it is our cup final, it is very much theirs as well,” said Mitchell.’
He added: “Who would have thought at the start of the season that we would be playing Saints in a promotion six-pointer in mid-March?
“I spoke to someone quite high up at Southampton who watched us last season and they said we would suffer badly in this division and probably come straight back down.’
“We have already surpassed our expectations for the season and they still have theirs to achieve. I think it shows just how far we have come that we are in this position. We have been above them for most of the season and want to keep it that way.’
Bournemouth Team News:
Schneiderlin and Bialkowski are both likely to remain sidelined as is Guly who it is hoped will return to training soon.
Oscar Gobern and Jonathan Forte are both knocking on the door for a start though the only change expected is that of Jaidi coming back in for Martin.
Player to watch: Lee Barnard
Lee has proven to be the Saints leading scorer in ratio to goals per game and with his work-rate could prove to be the difference between the two clubs.
Southampton Team News:
Rhoys Wiggins made a return on Tuesday and could retain his place at left-back.Dalle Valle could keep his place at the expence of Symes who had to come of early on Tuesday evening. Mark Molesley is close to a recall after sitting on the bench for tuesday’s game at Exeter.
Player to watch: Shwan Jalal
Jalal is an excellent keeper and has won some valuable points for his club with his superbly high standard of goalkeeping.
Match Facts & Stats
With over 50 years since the two clubs played in a league match there are little statistics of worth available.
he clubs have met twice at St Mary’s this season with Saints running out 2-0 winners both times.
Mr Andre Mariner Officiates
Mr D Cann & Mr M Cairns assist
Mr D McDermid is 4th official
Very hard to predict this game as both sides have telling claims. Cherries impressive home form and Saints with the two home wins earlier in the season. Sitting on the fence I am tempted to go for a draw. 2-2
Sat 19th March 2011
Carlisle v Cherries
aints v Sheffield Weds