Vitality Stadium - Premier League
Bournemouth and Cardiff get their Premier League campaigns underway this weekend, when they meet at the Vitality Stadium on Saturday afternoon. A good start to the season is going to be crucial for both sides, so we could be in for a lively encounter.
The teams were last in the same division during the 2014/15 campaign, with Bournemouth winning a lively first game 5-3, before a somewhat calmer 1-1 draw in Cardiff in the return. The Bluebirds actually won their three previous games at Bournemouth prior to that eight-goal thriller, although that run goes back to 2002 so counts for little on Saturday.
New Bournemouth full-back Diego Rico is suspended after picking up a three-match ban in his last match for Leganes. Junior Stanislas also misses out through injury, although Nathan Ake is expected to be fit following a toe injury.
Cardiff will have new boys such as Bobby Reid, Josh Murphy and Greg Cunningham available, with Neil Warnock left with a decision on whether to hand all three their debuts. Forward Danny Ward should be okay after a knee scare in pre-season.
Bournemouth vs Cardiff City Preview and Predictions
As the fate of various teams last season proved, a good start is vital for setting up a positive Premier League campaign. We won’t be able to read too much into the result of this game in terms of what may pan out for the rest of the season, but both teams will be gunning for the three points this weekend.
Bournemouth were one of the teams that made a dreadful start last term, losing their first four games. The Cherries recovered to finish 12th in the end, although the poor showing during the early stages of the campaign threatened to cost manager Eddie Howe his job.
Bournemouth are the favourites in the betting for this game, and they’re priced at evens for the win. Cardiff are 16/5 to announce their arrival back in the big time with a bang, as they look forward to their first Premier League game since 2014.
Plenty of people have the Bluebirds down as relegation favourites, and a lack of depth and Premier League quality in their squad would suggest they’re in for a tough time. However, boss Warnock is a seasoned campaigner, with Cardiff available at 5/2 to come away from the south coast with a point.
Both teams to score at 19/20
Both sides will give everything on the opening weekend of the season, which could lead to an entertaining game. Add Bournemouth to your bet as the winner and the odds rise to 17/5.
Over 4.5 goals at 7/1
Bournemouth conceded almost as many goals at home last season as they did away, while the teams shared eight goals the last time they were in the same league. An over 7.5 goals bet is 125/1.