English Premier League
Kick Off: Sunday, 25 August at 6.30 PM IST
Stadium: Vitality Stadium
Free English Premier League Picks Bournemouth vs. Manchester City
After a controversial game against Spurs, City travel to the Vitality Stadium to face Eddie Howe’s Bournemouth on Sunday in the Premier League. Bournemouth have never beaten Manchester City in 14 previous league meetings (W0 D2 L12), losing each of their last eight games, all of which have been in the Premier League. City would be eager for three points, as league leaders Liverpool have won all of their games. None of Man City’ last 16 away league games have finished level – with the Citizens winning 13 including the last eight in a row (L3). Bournemouth came back strongly against Aston Villa at Villa Park, before being held on by Sheffield United in their opening fixture at home. The Cherries fans would be hoping for an upset when they take on the two time defending champions City.
Bournemouth have lost 13 of their last 15 Premier League games against ‘big six’ opposition (W2), with both victories in this run coming at the Vitality Stadium (4-0 v Chelsea in January and 1-0 v Spurs in May). Last season’s 1-0 defeat to City at home was unlike how Eddie Howe likes to play – The Cherries need to express themselves and press well instead of holding back while playing against City. The pressure will be on City to deliver and most teams allow Pep’s side to dominate, resulting in more goals for the Citizens – Man City have won eight matches against the Cherries by an aggregate score of 25-3. Callum Wilson is crucial to Bournemouth chances this season, his form has drifted drastically – who hasn’t scored in any of his last five Premier League home games for Bournemouth, going 469 minutes and taking 15 shots since his last goal at the Vitality Stadium. The Cherries have some injury concerns heading into the match; Dan Gosling, Simon Francis and Stanislas are all sidelined through injuries. Meanwhile, Lewis Cook has returned to training after suffering from a knee injury.
City are a genuine contenders for a third consecutive time, but this time they have already started to play catch up in the title race and come Sunday it’s a must win. None of Man City’ last 16 away league games have finished level – with the Citizens winning 13 including the last eight in a row (L3). Kevin de Buryne’s return to the squad is important, having played well against Spurs the Belgian would want his side to come out on top and his inclusion certainly helps the Citizens. Another key player for Guardiola is Sterling who just can’t stop scoring goals, the England International has raised his game to another level which have increased expectations from the fans in general. City suffered a huge blow when they lost Leroy Sane through a long term injury. Centre back John Stones is yet to recover alongside Benjamin Mendy who also hasn’t recovered from a knee injury.
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Man City’s Raheem Sterling has been directly involved in 10 goals in just seven Premier League appearances against Bournemouth (8 goals, 2 assists), with the England forward netting in two of his three games at the Vitality Stadium.
Man City midfielder Kevin De Bruyne has assisted 49 goals in his 122 Premier League appearances so far – the fewest number of games taken to assist 50 goals in the competition’s history is held by Mesut Özil (141 games).
Bournemouth have never kept a clean sheet in their 21 previous Premier League games on a Sunday, shipping 56 goals in total (W3 D2 L16). Their only two home wins on Sunday in the top-flight have been vs ‘big six’ sides (4-3 v Liverpool and 2-1 v Arsenal).
Bournemouth 0 – 2 Manchester City