Premier League Preview: Aston Villa v Southampton

Manager Ronald Koeman hopes to harness the feel-good factor among his international stars when Southampton visit Aston Villa on Monday.

Koeman's team are riding high in the Premier League, with a run of eight wins from nine matches putting them second behind leaders Chelsea.

This impressive form has led to an increased number of Southampton players gaining recognition at international level.

Right-back Nathaniel Clyne made his England debut in last weekend's Euro 2016 qualifier against Slovenia and kept his place for the friendly victory over Scotland in midweek.

Fraser Forster started the latter game in goal for England, while the duo's defensive team-mate colleague Jose Fonte earned an international debut for Portugal.

Forwards Sadio Mane and Emmanuel Mayuka were in 2015 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying action for Senegal and Zambia respectively and Koeman told Southampton's official website: "Most of them are very happy about the performances and the results, like Jose who made his debut for Portugal and Clyney did very good in the two games he played.

"Fraser played one game too. It gives the players the confidence and it gives a good challenge what they have had with the national team. It is a positive for the club."

The international break did not provide exclusively good news for Koeman, as Morgan Schneiderlin returned from France duty with groin injury.

Fellow midfielders Steven Davis and Dusan Tadic have also nursed complaints. Davis missed out on Northern Ireland action having picked up a hamstring problem in Southampton's win over Leicester City a fortnight ago, while Tadic played in Serbia's qualifier versus Denmark, but sat out Tuesday's friendly against Greece.

Tadic returned to training on Friday, but Davis and Schneiderlin remain doubtful.

Selection problems come in defence for Aston Villa after Philippe Senderos sustained a calf problem while away with Switzerland to join centre-half team-mates Nathan Baker (knee) and Ron Vlaar (calf) on the sidelines.

Villa's backline kept out another of the league's in-form teams, West Ham, last time out to secure a 0-0 draw at Upton Park and halt a run of six consecutive defeats.

That result followed a late 2-1 loss to Tottenham in a game that Paul Lambert's team led and the Villa manager is keen to build on two displays where he identified plenty of promise.

"We had a really tough game down there at West Ham," Lambert told his club's official website. "That's what you're trying to build on.

"They were bang in form. I thought we defended really strongly. We had chances to score ourselves so that's what we're looking towards.

"If we can take what we did against Tottenham and West Ham into the Southampton game then we'll be well in the match.

"West Ham were playing well when we went down there. It's a point we're going to try and build on.

"Southampton are full of confidence at the moment - that's what winning does.

"Sometimes you step on that conveyor belt and it keeps on going."