Bournemouth v Crystal Palace: Cherries won't storm the Palace
Crystal Palace's defensive record has convinced Dan Fitch that their match with Bournemouth will produce few goals...
Bournemouth 2.62 v Crystal Palace 3.10; The Draw 3.30 Saturday 20 June, 19:45 Live on BBC One
Cherries face fight without star winger
Bournemouth have nine games to save their Premier League status. Eighteenth in the table when the season was brought to a pause, the Cherries must look to put together a run of form to climb the table.
This match looks crucial and not just because it can kickstart a revival. Bournemouth have some tough remaining fixtures, facing the likes of Wolves, Manchester United, Spurs, Leicester and Manchester City in the coming weeks. The game against Crystal Palace, at home, looks like one of their best hopes of claiming a win.
Bournemouth's chances have not been helped by the news that Ryan Fraser has refused to extend his contract on a short-term basis, with a free transfer to a bigger Premier League club seemingly forthcoming. Fraser has been a vital figure for Bournemouth in recent seasons and his decision leaves his teammates to fight against relegation without him.
Eddie Howe might have to manage without Fraser's services, but overall his selection options have improved during the time that the season has been on hold. Long-term casualties like Lloyd Kelly and David Brooks are now back in contention, as Bournemouth's list of injuries has eased.
Palace dreaming of Europe
Crystal Palace have often found themselves in a position similar to Bournemouth at this stage of the season, but they now have the luxury of a pressure free run-in.
Eleventh in the Premier League with 39 points, relegation is not a concern for Palace. Instead they can think ambitiously. European qualification will be tough given the quality of teams fighting it out, but mathematically the Londoners have a chance.
Three successive 1-0 wins before the season was halted, leaves Palace only four points behind seventh placed Wolves and a possible Europa League qualification spot. Their remaining fixtures are probably too tough to make that dream a reality, but like Bournemouth, they will consider this to be one of their more winnable games.
Roy Hodgson's defensive options have received a boost during the season break. Patrick van Aanholt and Mamadou Sakho are both back in training.
Draw is value in close match
Bournemouth are the2.62 favourites, with a Crystal Palace win at 3.10 and the draw at 3.30.
These odds are close and rightly so. You can make an argument for either side here, with Bournemouth surely more motivated, playing at home and possessing some match-winning talent. Yet Palace ended the season in better form and tend to be a difficult side to break down.
If there's to be a winner in this match, it's likely to be by a single goal. As the outsider,the draw at 3.30 looks the bet here and should at the least provide an opportunity to trade in-play.
Palace defensive record points to low scoring game
If there's uncertainty about the result, there's surely more clarity to be found in the goals markets.
Crystal Palace come into this match off the back of three consecutive clean sheets. Going further back, nine of their last eleven matches have seen either two or less goals scored.
Bournemouth were once reliable scorers, but that is no longer the case. Under 2.5 goals looks value at 1.79.