Bournemouth v Manchester City Predictions, Betting Tips and Previews
February 28, 2019
Vitality Stadium - Premier League
Manchester City have the change to briefly reclaim the Premier League top spot, as they travel to Bournemouth this weekend. The Cherries were thrashed by Arsenal mid-week but are undefeated in their last five home matches.
A comfortable win for City at the Etihad in the reverse fixture saw goals from Raheem Sterling, David Silva and Iklay Gundogen, with Callum Wilson grabbing one back for his side.
Eddie Howe's options are somewhat limited with a number of key players injured, including Callum Wilson and Steve Cook. Summer signing Domonic Solanke also missed out mid-week with a minor thigh problem, although his replacement, Lys Mousset, scored on his debut.
Injuries are also taking their toll for Pep Guardiola, who is without Gabriel Jesus, Americ Laporte, John Stones or Fernandinho. As a result the manager may hand a start to Phil Foden in midfield, whilst Raheem Sterling may play centrally.
Bournemouth v Manchester City Predicitons and Preview
Bournemouth's away form has let them down this season, but they remain a strong unit at home and could well be stumbling block in Manchester City's title challenge this weekend.
Having won the Carabao Cup on Sunday, the toll of playing 120 minutes of football, and competing on four fronts appeared to have taken its toll on City against West Ham. The champions looked laboured at times, and it took a Sergio Aguero penalty to break the deadlock, this weekend, Guardiola may be forced into rotations, which will play into Bournemouth's hands.
Aguero, the current Premier League top scorer and 8/15 to score on Saturday, looked wiped out by the final whistle on Wednesday night, and Guardiola will surely be wary of another injury. Although having the option of playing Sterling through the middle is hardly a catastrophe, it will limit the options in terms of build-up play, and allow Howe to set his defence up deeper.
For Bournemouth, injuries will also limit the manager's selection, but the tactics will remain largely the same. If the Cherries are to get a result they will have to pack out the midfield, not allowing City any space to run into, whilst encouraging Josh King, who is 7/2 to score, to test Vincent Kompany and Nicolas Otamendi with pacey counter-attacks.
This may not be Howe's preferred style of football but following a 5-1 defeat at Arsenal, he will need to focus on defence for this week at least. Bournemouth players will likewise be keen to prove themselves following the heavy loss, and will be willing to dig in and fulfil their off-the-ball responsibilities.
With Liverpool playing on Sunday, a win for City would put some phycological pressure on the league leaders, but they may have their work cut out on Saturday afternoon.
Raheem Sterling to score anytime at 21/20
The winger was man of the match against Chelsea and playing full of confidence at the moment.
Under 2.5 goals at 11/5
City may not be in full flow on Saturday and Bournemouth have a point to prove.