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Preview: Swansea City vs. Southampton

Sports Mole previews the Premier League clash between Swansea City and Southampton in Wales, with both teams having little to play for over the final two games.

After securing their Premier League status last weekend with the home thrashing of Aston Villa, Garry Monk's Swansea City team will go into Saturday's game against Southampton with only league position to play for.

Swansea, currently sitting 12th in the table, still have a slim chance of finishing in the top half, and Monk will be keen to end the season on a high note as he continues his audition for the permanent manager's job.

Monk, who has been a player at Swansea since 2004, took temporary charge in February following the sacking of Michael Laudrup, and has won four of his 12 top-flight matches in charge, including the last two.

He remains hopeful of getting the job on a full-time basis and recent backing from club captain Ashley Williams shows that he has the support of senior squad members.

After ending a three-match winless run courtesy of a 2-0 success against Everton at St Mary's Stadium, Mauricio Pochettino's Southampton travel to Wales knowing that eighth place is already secured.

However, with the World Cup growing ever closer, plenty of Saints players will be looking at Saturday's game as a chance to make a last-minute impression on England manager Roy Hodgson.

Luke Shaw, many people's favourite to be Leighton Baines's understudy, will be keen to stake his claim for selection as he attempts to beat the vastly experienced Ashley Cole to the second left-back berth.

On the other flank, Nathaniel Clyne will hope that some eye-catching performances will push him into contention. The former Crystal Palace man may feature in Hodgson's 23-man plans now that Tottenham Hotspur's Kyle Walker is a major doubt for the tournament with a hip problem.

While Adam Lallana looks certain to start against Italy in the first Group D game, Rickie Lambert still has the ghost of Andy Carroll lurking over his seat on the plane and goal or two in Wales will calm fears over his possible omission.

Swansea will be without Angel Rangel for the rest of the season due to a groin strain, and Michu (ankle) remains a doubt. Monk is boosted, though, by the return of Chico Flores after a two-match ban.

Pochettino has no new injury concerns, but is still without midfield regular Morgan Schneiderlin, Maya Yoshida, Gaston Ramirez, Kelvin Davis and 15-goal leading scorer Jay Rodriguez.

Recent form

Swansea: WWLLWD

Southampton: WDLLWL

Possible starting lineups

Swansea: Vorm; Tiendalli, Chico, Williams; Davies; Britton, Shelvey; Routledge, De Guzman, Hernandez; Bony

Southampton: Boruc; Clyne, Fonte, Lovren, Shaw; Cork, Wanyama, Davis; Ward-Prowse, Lallana, Lambert

Sports Mole says: 2-1


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Manchester City's Argentinian striker Sergio Aguero celebrates scoring his third goal during the English FA Cup fourth round football match between Manchester City and Watford at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester on January 25, 2014
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Olympic medal table header
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ChinaChina34241674
United StatesUnited States29352791
JapanJapan22101446
AustraliaAustralia1751941
Olympics flagRussian Olympic Committee16222058
Great BritainGreat Britain16181852
Today's Olympic highlights header

Friday's key events


HOCKEY
· Great Britain's women aim to secure their place on the podium as they face India in the bronze medal match (2.30am)
· Netherlands - silver medallists five years ago - and Argentina battle for the gold medal in the women's final (11am)

BEACH VOLLEYBALL
· The women's gold medal will be decided as Australia and USA go head to head (3.30am)

BOXING
· Lauren Price will be looking to add to Team GB's success in the ring when she takes on Nouchka Fontijn of Netherlands in the women's middleweight semi-final (6am)

DIVING
· Tom Daley already has one Olympic gold to his name in Tokyo, and he begins his bid for second in the men's 10m platform. Teammate Noah Williams is also involved in the preliminary round (7am)

CYCLING
· Jason Kenny's reign as sprint king may be over, but Jack Carlin looked strong in his bid to succeed his compatriot. He takes on Harrie Lavreysen in his sprint semi-final (8.10am), with the final taking place later in the day (10.35am)
· The women's madison makes its Olympic debut at the velodrome as Team GB duo Katie Archibald and Laura Kenny look to add another medal to their collections (9.15am)

FOOTBALL
· Hosts Japan will look to get themselves on the podium as they face Mexico in the men's bronze medal match (10am)
· The women's champions will be crowned as both Sweden and Canada aim to win Olympic gold for the very first time (1pm)

ATHLETICS
· The men's 5000m final includes Great Britain's Andrew Butchart, but most eyes will be on Ugandan world record holder Joshua Cheptegei (1pm)
· Team GB's Jodie Williams will hope to get on the podium in the women's 400m final, but defending champ Shaunae Miller-Uibo is favourite for gold while Stephenie Ann McPherson should challenge and Allyson Felix is bidding to become the most decorated female track and field athlete of all time (1.35pm)
· Netherlands' Sifan Hassan takes on leg two of her ambitious attempt at a Tokyo treble in a women's 1500m final which also includes Great Britain's Laura Muir and Faith Kipyegon of Kenya (1.50pm)
· A star-studded women's 4x100m relay final will see a Team GB quartet including Dina Asher-Smith look to upset defending champions USA and favourites Jamaica, who boast Elaine Thompson-Herah as she goes for her third gold of the Games (2.30pm)
· Great Britain and Jamaica will also be going for gold in the men's 4x100m relay final, and their medal hopes have been boosted by USA's failure to qualify (2.50pm)

> Today's schedule in full
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