Wayne Rooney takes his Birmingham City side to Southampton on Saturday afternoon (12:30), searching for his first points in his new post, having lost his opening two games in charge. He made his home bow against Hull City in midweek but was subsequently booed off after another poor performance.
The baptism of fire continues this weekend, against the promotion-chasing Saints and it is fair to say that the Manchester United legend is already under a degree of pressure.
We are expecting another miserable afternoon for the Blues and have picked out two markets that will be good viewing for Saints fans.
As you can imagine, Southampton are the favourites to win this contest at 4/7. If you fancy Rooney to collect his first points in charge of Birmingham, then you can back a draw at 3/1, while a Blues victory is 5/1.
You can get both teams to score in this match at 4/5. Over 2.5 is available at 8/11 but you will find greater value in backing over 3.5 goals at 7/4.
Southampton boss Russell Martin has two injuries to contend with ahead of the weekend, with Ross Stewart and Juan Larios sidelined.
For Birmingham, Lee Buchanan, Tyler Roberts, Keshi Anderson, Alfie Chang and George Hall are all out injured. Ethan Laird could return to the squad this weekend, after sitting out the last two months with a hamstring problem.
Southampton to win to nil @ 13/8
They may not be the best team in the division but Southampton possess more than enough quality to blow this Birmingham team away right now. Everything that fans predicted when John Eustace was sacked for Rooney is unfolding, the team are struggling to implement his style of play.
After the defeat in midweek, the players told the manager that they weren’t comfortable playing his way and a club that was on the march a few weeks ago are in a real mess.
Rooney may only be two games in to his reign but his side haven’t looked like scoring, let alone picking up points. Martin’s side can certainly capitalise on this situation at St Mary’s on Saturday.
Che Adams to score anytime @ 6/4
The Blues are an easy hit right now and the Southampton attackers will be rubbing their hands together for this match. One of them, of course, is a familiar face to Birmingham. Saints striker Che Adams spent three years at St Andrew’s and made the switch to the south coast from the West Midlands outfit in 2019.
The Scotland international has three Championship goals to his name so far this campaign and he will be looking to increase his contributions, so that he can help fire the Saints back to the Premier League.
It feels as though the script is written for the former Birmingham man to rub salt into the wounds of his former employers this weekend, and at 6/4, he offers great value.