Bournemouth v Middlesbrough
Saturday, 15:00


Consecutive defeats against the Premier League's two best teams have seen Bournemouth's upward momentum come to a sudden stop and they need to bounce back when they host Middlesbrough.

Things change quickly in football and an unbeaten run of five games has now become a sequence of four games without a win (with the draws against Southampton and Liverpool being counted in both statistics).

Eddie Howe has no reason to be disheartened. The away draws at Southampton and Liverpool were very good results, while most teams have lost to Chelsea and Spurs this season. Middlesbrough are much more beatable opposition and a win would see Bournemouth move to within a whisker of safety.

Howe will be without the injured Adam Federici, Andrew Surman, Jack Wilshere and Callum Wilson for Saturday's match, while Dan Gosling is a doubt.


Middlesbrough have perhaps looked a little better since Steve Agnew took charge, but a record of two draws from five games is far from good enough to keep them in the top flight.

It looked as if Boro might be able to snatch a win in Monday's game against Arsenal having equalised in the second-half, but the Gunners were able to ride out the storm and eventually win 2-1.

Middlesbrough have now gone 15 games without a win in the league, in which they've scored a meagre seven goals. With their remaining six fixtures seeing them face the likes of Manchester City, Chelsea and Liverpool, it's impossible to imagine Boro survive.

Agnew's problems got even bigger against Arsenal, as Fabio and Grant Leadbitter both picked up injuries. They join Victor Valdes on the casualty list.

Ref Watch

Graham Scott will officiate. Scott refereed Middlesbrough's 2-1 loss to Tottenham earlier this season, showing three yellow cards.

Match Odds

Bournemouth are the favourites at 1.90, with the draw at 3.80 and Middlesbrough out at 4.60.

Before their loss to Chelsea the Cherries had won their previous two home games and with Middlesbrough in such abject form, the price for a home win is appealing.

Middlesbrough's last six defeats have all seen them going into the break behind and you can back Bournemouth to win Half-Time/Full-Time at 2.96.

Over/Under 2.5 Goals

This market is very evenly matched, with under 2.5 goals the slight favourite at 1.96and overs at 1.98.

Bournemouth's last three games have all seen three goals or more, but the opposition scored eight of them. Middlesbrough have struggled to score all season, but have become a little more potent under Agnew, finding the net in three of their last five matches.

The statistics might send mixed messages, but a price close to evens for under 2.5 goals surely has to be snapped up when you consider that Middlesbrough are a team that lack of firepower, but nevertheless have defensive resolve.

To Score

Bournemouth have two in-form forwards available at tempting prices. Josh King has scored 10 goals in his last 12 appearances and leads the market at 2.76.

Another option is King's strike partner Benik Afobe, who has found the net in the recent matches against Swansea and Liverpool. He's available at 3.00.

Recommended Bets
Back Bournemouth to win at 1.90
Back under 2.5 goals at 1.98
Back King to score at [2.75]

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