Chelsea could go into the international break next week on an 11-match unbeaten run, providing they avoid defeat against Southampton on Sunday.

Last season, the two sides faced each other twice in the space of a week in April, with the Blues coming out on top 3-2 and 2-0 in the Premier League and FA Cup respectively.

Maurizio Sarri’s side beat MOL Vidi 1-0 on Thursday evening to move three points clear at the top of Group L in the Europa League.

Meanwhile, Southampton goes into this weekend’s match at St Mary’s Stadium having not won in the league in their last three attempts.

Ahead of their first match against each other since the semi-finals of the FA Cup six months ago, here is our combined Southampton and Chelsea team, based on WhoScored.com’s average match rating statistics from the Premier League this season.

Goalkeeper: Alex McCarthy (Southampton) 6.94

English goalkeeper Alex McCarthy has cemented his spot as Southampton’s first-choice goalkeeper this season.

McCarthy has kept clean sheets in two of his seven league appearances so far, which came against Burnley and Crystal Palace.

On the opening weekend of the league campaign, McCarthy was named as WhoScored’s star man during the goalless draw with the Clarets, having made six saves to deny Sean Dyche’s side from scoring.

He has earned a call-up to England’s national squad on four occasions between 2013 and 2018, with his latest coming in Gareth Southgate’s squad announcement on Thursday. However, the 28-year-old is yet to make his debut for the Three Lions.

Right-back: Cesar Azpilicueta (Chelsea) 7.05

Having captained Chelsea in all seven of their league matches this season, Cesar Azpilicueta has been heavily involved in Sarri’s side’s impressive start to the season.

The Spanish defender has helped his side to keep clean sheets in three of their seven league matches.

He also has an assist in the league to his name, which came as part of Alvaro Morata’s goal against Arsenal in August.

Azpilicueta has kept his place in Spain’s latest national squad for their friendly against Wales and Nations League match against England later this month.

Centre-back: David Luiz (Chelsea) 7.18

David Luiz has returned to the form this season that earned him a place in the 2014 FIFA FIFPro World XI.

The Brazilian centre-back has played every minute of league football this season, the only Chelsea centre-back to do so.

Luiz has averaged 75.3 passes per match in the top-flight, only Manchester City’s Aymeric Laporte and Luiz’s colleague Antonio Rudiger have averaged more from the centre of defence.

He has also averaged 4.3 clearances per match, the second-most out of Chelsea’s squad in the league this season.

Centre-back: Jannik Vestergaard (Southampton) 7.02

Southampton’s summer signing Jannik Vestergaard has made an impact in the heart of the Saints’ back-line since his arrival from Borussia Monchengladbach.

The 26-year-old has played for the duration in all but one of Mark Hughes’ side’s top-flight games this term.

Vestergaard has won seven offside decisions for his team this season, the joint-fourth most in the entire league.

He has also averaged 6.5 clearances per match, the most out of any Southampton player and the eighth-best rate in the Premier League.

Left-back: Marcos Alonso (Chelsea) 7.35

Chelsea’s prolific full-back, Marcos Alonso may have only scored once in seven games so far this season, but his influence in the side has been certainly noticeable.

Alonso has provided two direct assists, as well as winning penalties against Huddersfield Town and Newcastle United.

During the Blues’ 3-2 victory over Arsenal in their first match at Stamford Bridge of the season, Alonso netted a late winner during their first London derby of the campaign.

Like Chelsea’s opposing full-back Azpilicueta, Alonso has also been called up by Luis Enrique for Spain’s upcoming internationals, where he will hope to build on the two senior international caps he currently has.

Centre-midfield: Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg (Southampton) 7.09

Southampton’s Danish midfielder, Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg has impressed so far in his third season of English football.

In his five league appearances, Hojbjerg has scored twice, with his goals coming against Crystal Palace and Brighton and Hove Albion in consecutive matches.

After being sent off during the 2-1 defeat to Leicester City in August, Hojbjerg has returned to form and is Southampton’s second-best rated player this term.

The centre-midfielder has won 21 caps for his country but failed to make the cut for their World Cup squad that competed in Russia earlier this year.

Attacking-midfield: Mohamed Elyounoussi (Southampton) 6.99

Another summer arrival to the South Coast of England over the summer is Norweigan midfielder, Mohamed Elyounoussi.

Since joining from Basel, Elyounoussi has featured in five Premier League matches.

He is yet to have a direct goal contribution in the league but does have the third-best crosses per match average in the division.

The 24-year-old has also completed nine key passes, only two other Southampton players have completed as many.

Attacking-midfield: Eden Hazard (Chelsea) 8.02

Belgian Eden Hazard has glistened for the Blues in the Premier League this season.

Having scored six goals and provided two assists during his seven appearances, Hazard has had a direct hand in more goals in England’s top-flight than any other player.

In September, Hazard scored five league goals and won three star man awards in just four league appearances.

Unsurprisingly, he made the shortlist to win September’s Premier League Player of the Month award and should feel unlucky if he does not win the trophy later this month.

Right-wing: Pedro (Chelsea) 7.49

In Pedro’s five league appearances this term, the Spaniard has looked like a player whose confidence has returned under Blues manager Sarri.

Pedro netted three times in his first four appearances of the campaign, during victories over Huddersfield, Arsenal and Bournemouth.

His average match rating of 7.49 out of 10 in the league makes him the ninth-highest rated player in the whole division, and the second-highest rated Spanish player, only behind Manchester City’s David Silva (7.88).

The 31-year-old has missed Chelsea’s last two league games due to injury but could be in line to feature against the Saints, having started in Chelsea’s 1-0 win over Vidi.

Striker: Danny Ings (Southampton) 7.16

Striker Danny Ings signed for Southampton on-loan from Liverpool on transfer deadline day, a decision that has paid off so far.

Ings has scored three goals during his six league appearances this season, netting against Everton, Palace and Brighton.

The 26-year-old also scored during their victory over Everton in the Carabao Cup in midweek, meaning he will go into the match against Chelsea with three goals in his last four matches.

Should Ings continue his run of form, he will make it very difficult for England manager Southgate to ignore him in the future. Ings’ only cap for his country came during a victory over Lithuania three years ago this month, when Roy Hodgson was in charge of the national side.

Left-wing: Willian (Chelsea) 7.15

Brazilian wide-man Willian completes the side after his strong start to the season.

Alongside Pedro and Hazard, ‘Sarri-ball’ has started to allow the club’s trio of wingers to cause havoc when attacking and have been key to Chelsea’s start to the season, which currently sees them in third position in the league table.

In the league, Willian has just the one goal and assist to his name but he did also score the winner during the Blues’ Europa League over PAOK Salonika last month.

Willian has also made 18 key passes in his seven Premier League matches, only three players in the division have mustered more.

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