Bournemouth v Watford
Bournemouth host Watford at Dean Court on Saturday, in a game that both Eddie Howe and Marco Silva will be keen to kick-start their respective Premier League campaigns.
Bournemouth enter the game off the back of 1-0 defeat at The Hawthorns last week, with an expected striking combination comprising of Defoe, King and/or Afobe meaning Howe’s men will be looking to set down a marker and build on their impressive home form last campaign, in which they amassed nine home wins and consequently recorded their highest Premier League finish ever of ninth.
The struggles away to West Brom last week were telling of the progress Bournemouth must make if they are to establish themselves as a top-half team in the Premier League: they must learn to break down compact, defensively orientated opposition.
Perhaps opposition such as that of Marco Silva’s Watford, despite Silva’s men conceding three goals in their opener v Liverpool last weekend.
Silva has begun to build a quietly promising squad at Vicarage Road, with the acquisitions of Will Hughes and Nathaniel Chalobah forming a young English spine with talent in abundance.
Three goals scored last weekend against a likely top-four team will be promising signs for Silva, though the three conceded; especially coming into an away game v Bournemouth, will have alarmed Silva – one would expect a deeper lying back-line for Watford on Saturday designed to prevent a recurrence of 3+ conceded.
This will be a tightly contested affair on the south coast, with Watford’s proven attacking abilities versus an often fragile Bournemouth back-line meaning goals are likely to be a given at Dean Court.
Prediction: Bournemouth 3 Watford 2
Written by Tom Newman.