Aston Villa v Bournemouth

8 Apr

Rudy Gestede scored the only goal as Aston Villa beat Bournemouth on the opening day of the season.


Rudy Gestede (centre) scored the only goal as Aston Villa beat Bournemouth on the opening day of the season

TEAM NEWS

Aston Villa will be without Alan Hutton through suspension, while Ciaran Clark remains a doubt with a calf injury.

Gabriel Agbonlahor is available again, having been suspended by Villa last weekend after he was pictured appearing to hold a shisha pipe while on holiday.

Bournemouth striker Benik Afobe has been ruled out for up to four weeks with a hamstring strain.

Adam Smith is a major doubt with a hernia problem, while Harry Arter misses out with an Achilles problem.

Long-term absentee Callum Wilson is back in training and could return before the end of the season.

MOTD COMMENTATOR’S NOTES

Steve Wilson: “All the fight has long gone; only the final, stinking few breaths of Villa’s awful season remain. If they get a worse result against Bournemouth than Norwich get at Crystal Palace, then they will be relegated.

“Many people have played a part in Villa’s demise – and protests at the absent owner Randy Lerner are expected again on Saturday.

“This dreadful team seems to have been assembled on a blueprint last used by Dr Frankenstein – roughly grafting together dubious body parts that have long since seen better days, in the hope that they might somehow function as a whole.

“Whether Bournemouth win, lose or draw on Saturday, they’ve already taught Villa a lesson in how to play with heart and desire – qualities in evidence at Villa Park recently about as regularly as Mr Lerner.”

Twitter: @SteveWilson1967

WHAT THE MANAGERS SAY

Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe: “I think it is important we respond with a better performance.

“I think the last two games we have played top teams and they have given us a good marker on how much we have got to improve, but in saying that our performance levels have not been what they were.

“I just want to see my team play at their best levels and give everything then you accept the result. For some reason we have not managed that the last two games.”

LAWRO’S PREDICTION

Aston Villa are looking to do the double over Bournemouth – their only away win of the season came at the Vitality Stadium on the opening day.

But it is far more likely that the Cherries relegate Villa, which can happen with a combination of results on Saturday.

Prediction: 1-2

Lawro’s full predictions v jockey Leighton Aspell

  • Think you can do better than Lawro? Predict the score for this match and the rest of this round’s Premier League fixtures in our Predictor game.
Aston Villa won at Bournemouth on the opening day of the season - their only win in their first 20 league games.<!–

MATCH FACTS

Head-to-head

  • Bournemouth lost their first ever Premier League game to Villa 1-0 on the opening day of the season.
  • Villa hosted the Cherries in the FA Cup last season – winning 2-1 in the fourth round.

Aston Villa

  • Villa have lost seven consecutive games for the second time this season, equalling their worst ever run of consecutive Premier League defeats. Only once before have they suffered more consecutive defeats in the league – that was in 1963 when they lost 11 in a row.
  • Over their last seven games they have a goal difference of -20, having scored just two goals and conceded 22.
  • They have conceded 15 goals in their last four matches at Villa Park.
  • The Villans have made a joint-high 13 errors leading to goals in the top-flight this season (level with West Ham).

Bournemouth

  • Bournemouth have lost their last two league games – on only one occasion this season have they lost more than two in a row (four between October-November).
  • They have conceded seven goals without reply in their last two matches.
  • The Cherries’ defeat by Tottenham in their last away game was their first loss in six matches away from home (W2, D3) and they have only lost two of their last 10.
  • They have conceded a league-high 18 goals from set pieces this season.

SAM (Sports Analytics Machine) is a super-computer created by Professor Ian McHale at the University of Salford that is used to predict the outcome of football matches.

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