Bournemouth v Man City
Saturday 26 August, 12:30
Live on Sky Sports Premier League

Goalless start to new campaign

Bournemouth finished last season strongly to end up in ninth place but they have started the new campaign with two defeats and have yet to score, having lost 1-0 at West Brom and 2-0 at home to Watford.

A largely second-string side gave the club a confidence boost on Tuesday night with a 2-1 win at Birmingham in the EFL Cup, and some of those players could be pushing for a starting place here. Jermain Defoe in particular must be in contention for his first start as Eddie Howe tries to add some bite to his attack.

Another summer trip to south coast

City took three points from their first away game at Brighton with a 2-0 victory and now they travel to another south-coast resort, where they won by the same scoreline last season.

Kyle Walker will be missing after his sending-off in the 1-1 at home to Everton on Monday night, when Raheem Sterling rescued a point with his 82nd-minute equaliser.

Danilo, the £26.5m summer signing from Real Madrid, is likely to take Walker's place. He started at Brighton and came on as a second-half sub on Monday.

City slick on their travels

Criticism of City's record under Pep Guardiola cannot extend to this type of match-up as they had figures of W11 D1 L1 away to teams outside the top seven last season and have already added their opening win at Brighton to that account.

That makes them probable winners but the odds are 1.33 and many punters will be looking for something at a bigger price.

To be fair to Bournemouth, we should not forget their decent home record of W2 D2 L3 against the top seven last season. But in some respects circumstances fell in their favour (for example, a 0-0 when Tottenham were missing Harry Kane) and their standout results (the 4-3 win over Liverpool and the 3-3 with Arsenal) came against the flakiest of the elite sides.

Team spirit will give Howe's side a chance of an upset if City are below par but they lost 2-0 at home to City and 4-0 away last season, which gives them a big gap to close (and the same matches ended 4-0 and 5-1 to Manuel Pellegrini's City the season before).

Go for a clear-cut away win

The most appealing bet is City at 1.93 off -1.5 on the Asian handicap, which requires them to win by at least two clear goals to be a winner. As they have done that - and often more - in their four Premier League meetings with Bournemouth, it looks a good shout.

Looking at City's 12 wins in this type of match-up (including the Brighton match), 10 have been by two goals or more.

By comparison, City's figures are lower for win-win on the Half Time/Full Time (7/12) and wins to nil (8/12).

Goals could go high

City had the highest away percentage for over 2.5 goals last season (79%) and 11 of their 14 away matches under Guardiola against teams below the top seven have had over 2.5 goals, pointing strongly in that direction at short odds of 1.54.

Over 3.5 goals is also well worth considering at 2.34, with 50% of City's away matches under Guardiola against teams below the top seven going that way. Bournemouth had 53% over 3.5 goals at home last season - the biggest percentage in the Premier League.

Aguero a sharpshooter

Sergio Aguero has scored in each of his last seven away appearances (eight if last season's FA Cup win at Middlesbrough is included), although he has been first scorer only twice.

Ref Watch

Mike Dean is not renowned as a low-profile official, having shown a red card in five of his 30 Premier League games last season, although his only appearance this season was quiet enough with only one yellow issued in Arsenal's 4-3 win over Leicester on the opening night.

Recommended Bet
Back Man City off -1.5 on Asian handicap at 1.93

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