Bournemouth v Watford Predictions, Betting Tips and Previews
December 30, 2018
Vitality Stadium - Premier League
Bournemouth's first game of 2019 is a home clash with Watford, as Eddie Howe's side look to bounce back from their Boxing Day mauling at Tottenham.
Bournemouth cruised to a 4-0 at Watford earlier this season, with striker Josh King netting twice at Vicarage Road. Watford's last victory over the The Cherries came on the opening day of the 2017-18 season, on the south coast.
Howe has no fresh injury concerns ahead of the visit of Javi Gracia's side, with Adam Smith, Lewis Cook, Dan Gosling and Simon Francis all set for a long absence from first team action.
Watford are likely to be without midfielder Christian Kabasele, who is struggling with a shoulder injury, while defender Sebastien Prodl is not yet match fit following a lay off. Andre Gray and Daryl Janmaat are both set to miss most of January through injury.
Bournemouth v Watford Predictions and Preview
Bournemouth were heavily beaten on Boxing Day, 5-0 away at in form Tottenham, and Howe will be looking for a reaction in their first home game of 2019. His side struggled in the back end of 2018, with just one win in their final five games of the calendar year, and Howe and his squad must improve of they are to avoid being dragged into a relegation battle later in the season.
Watford's end to 2018 was far more positive, with just one defeat in their last five games, and impressive wins over Cardiff and West Ham. Gracia's side are an option for Europa League qualification if they can maintain consistency in 2019, but points will not come easy in this clash against a frustrated Bournemouth.
Despite the form book being firmly against Bournemouth, the sense is that they will not be on the slide for long given the quality in their squad - and a draw, at 9/4 - looks a promising choice.
This tie looks to be a free hit for both sides, and given Bournemouth's need for substance over style at the moment it may not be a thriller for the neutral. That likely means it will not be a goal fest, and an under 2.5 total goals scored bet is priced at 11/10.
A 1-1 draw at 6/1
Bournemouth need points and Watford want to keep their momentum going, it is as simple as that in this meeting. Howe would take a point following a low key end to the year, and Gracia knows that his side's home form will be the definitive factor between now and the end of the season.
Abdoulaye Doucoure to score anytime at 9/2
Midfielder Doucoure has been in excellent goal scoring form in recent weeks, with three goals in his last five appearances. Gracia has freed him from some of his defensive responsibility this season, and the former Granada man is thriving, as his late equaliser against Newcastle showed.