Football: Weekend guide to the Premiership: Southampton v Wimbledon

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CENTRAL DEFENDER Ken Monkou is expected to return to Southampton's starting line-up after missing the last three matches with a thigh injury. The Dutchman could return in place of Gary Monk as Saints attempt to end a run of three successive defeats without a goal. Norwegian striker Egil Ostenstad will play in attack. Carlton Palmer returns from a one-match suspension, but manager David Jones is still hampered by injuries to long- term casualties David Hirst, John Beresford and Francis Benali.

Wimbledon winger Gareth Ainsworth has joined Michael Hughes on the treatment table for a groin injury and misses the trip. However, although Ainsworth is out for at least a week, he has hopes of being back in action on Boxing Day.

Nigerian international Efan Ekoku is expected to remain a substitute after his stay on the bench in the win over Liverpool last Sunday. The transfer-listed striker is anxious to leave the Dons and is reportedly angry that offers from other Premiership clubs have been turned down by manager Joe Kinnear.

SOUTHAMPTON (from): Jones, Hiley, Monkou, Lundekvam, Dodd, Palmer, Hughes, Oakley, Bridge, Le Tissier, Ostenstad, Kachloul, Monk, Basham, Beattie, Warner, Williams, Stensgaard.

WIMBLEDON (from): Sullivan, Cunningham, Kimble, Perry, Blackwell, Thatcher, C Hughes, Earle, Ekoku, Roberts, Gayle, Ardley, Heald, Leaburn, M Hughes, Kennedy, Castledine, Euell, Jupp, Clarke, Cort, Fear.

Suspensions: Wimbledon: Euell.

Referee: M Reed.

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