Ronald Koeman believes his side will need to be at the top of their game against Chelsea if they are to get a result, despite the Blues' struggles so far this season.
José Mourinho’s men have won just two of their opening seven games as they look to defend their Barclays Premier League crown and they head into Saturday’s teatime kick-off in 14th – eight points behind league leaders Manchester United.
Following their defeat to Porto in the Champions League on Tuesday night, Koeman feels as though the defending champions will be looking for a big reaction at Stamford Bridge this weekend.
“For sure we know it’s a difficult opponent,” Koeman told youtube.com/southamptonfc ahead of Saturday’s game. “They will look to react after the loss against Porto in the Champions League.
“They will go up in the table because they don’t stay that low for so long. We know what they can bring. We know the qualities of them.
“We have to be good and on a very high level to get a good result.
“We know what we can expect this Saturday. We had two good results last year against them, but we have to play on a higher level than we did against Swansea.
“I think the physical stage and the mental stage of the team is high, and you need that to show.”
Saints will look to exploit Chelsea’s fragile defensive line, which has seen them concede 14 goals already in the Premier League this season, when the two sides meet on Saturday.
And Koeman hopes his side will show the same clinical edge in front of goal as they did against MK Dons and Swansea City last week.
“Maybe they have some defensive problems,” Koeman added. “I think if you look back to last season they were the team with our defenders who had the best defensive record.
“They didn’t receive a lot of goals but this season it’s different. Maybe for that the confidence is not the same. They showed their character last year.
“If you was looking to the Chelsea team you feeling was that it was a winning team. Maybe they are struggling a little bit more this season.
“We know we can have a result if we play on our level because we had two draws against them last year.”