Southampton’s 2-0 defeat to Chelsea on Sunday was just their first home league loss of the season, and second of 2016.

That other defeat was also at the hands of the Blues back in February, and Antonio Conte’s side this time around proved too strong for the Saints once again.

The excellent Eden Hazard and in-form Diego Costa got Chelsea’s goals at St Mary’s, a result which put them within a point of league leaders Manchester City.

Photo: Simon Stacpoole / Offside.

Photo: Simon Stacpoole / Offside.

For Southampton, they slip to ninth as a result of Sunday’s loss, but must pick themselves up quickly as they host Inter Milan on Thursday in the Europa League.

The Italian side ended the Saints’ seven-match unbeaten run with a 1-0 win at the San Siro a fortnight ago, a result which blew Group K wide open, given that Inter currently sit bottom of the table.

Nevertheless, with two home games coming up, Southampton fans should be confident of progressing to the knock-out stages of the competition, although they could really do with getting a result at St Mary’s on Thursday.

Puel has chopped and changed his team in Europe this season, in a bid to keep the squad fresh, and could do the same again on Thursday, so here are THREE players he may drop against Inter…

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