Southampton head in their FA Cup quarter-final at Wigan Athletic in the midst of turbulent times with Mauricio Pellegrino having been sacked and dismissed and Mark Hughes having taken over the reins at the club.

The South Coast club are currently marooned in the bottom three in the Premier League with Pellegrino being dismissed after their 3-0 surrender at the hands of fellow strugglers Newcastle United out.

It is probably fair to say that the Saints will look at this game as a time to escape from the pressures of their league plight but Championship side Wigan will provide a stern test having provided the shock of the competition so far beating Manchester City in the previous round.

The visitors will still be without Charlie Austin and Steve Davis who are both recovering from hamstring injuries however, there is a possibility that Maya Yoshida could return to the squad after seven weeks out with a knee problem.

Hughes has only been in charge at Southampton for a matter of days and gave his views on what he’s seen from his new side so far and looked ahead to the tie.

”We’ve been working for two days and I’ve been encouraged by what I’ve seen. I know we’ve got the talent here to get the job done,” he said in a report by BBC Sport.

”I’ve been in the Premier League a long time and won a lot of points. We’re looking short term for now and that allows us to focus on the job at hand.

”There’s a real energy to the club, which I like. We’re all pushing in the right direction and we need to confirm that by winning football matches.”

This is the first-time Southampton have reached an FA Cup quarter-final in thirteen years when they were defeated by Manchester United in the 2004-05 season.

Also, this is only the fourth ever game that the teams have met with two being in the FA Cup – the Saints were the victors 3-0 in a fourth round tie in 1986 where ironically Wigan boss Paul Clarke played for the club that day.


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