Saints are just two places above resurgent Palace with Mauricio Pellegrino’s men failing to win any of their last eight matches – collecting just four points in those eight games.
They did though perform well in their 0-0 draw at Manchester United on Saturday and Pellegrino could be tempted to name an unchanged side that featured at Old Trafford.
Alex McCarthy started between the posts in that game and could get the nod again, ahead of Fraser Forster, but Ryan Bertrand is pushing for a start having recovered from a hamstring injury. Saints though are still without leading scorer Charlie Austin due to suspension.
In contrast, Palace have only lost one of their last 10 Premier League games and could equal a Premier League club record of five consecutive away matches without defeat.
Roy Hodgson is boosted by the news that three key players – Ruben Loftus-Cheek, James McArthur and Jeffrey Schlupp – should return after injury, although two others are missing. Jason Puncheon and Scott Dann both suffered injuries against Manchester City on New Year’s Eve and are absent, joining Mamadou Sakho on the sidelines.