Manchester City vs Bournemouth, 01 DEC 2018
Bournemouth lost their last three games, but they were bit unlucky, especially against Arsenal in their last weekend 1-2 defeat. The last fixture you want after 3 straight defeats is a match at Etihad Stadium, so expecting Cherries to end their bad run of form away at Manchester City is probably not on the cards today.
Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola is likely to be Bernardo Silva, Ilkay Gundogan and Gabriel Jesus through injuries, while Kevin de Bruyne, Benjamin Mendy and Claudio Bravo are definitely out.
Eddie Howe will be without suspended Jefferson Lerma, Adam Smith is on the sidelines, while Dan Gosling is doubtful with minor knee injury.
Manchester City finally was held by somebody, and that happened in midweek Champions League match against Lyon. French team managed to get a point against City in a bid to finish group phase of Champions League in second place, while Citizens were already qualified for the next phase.
Draw against Lyon definitely wasn't a disaster, but ended their run of fantastic results in November, including a convincing win against their local rivals from Manchester, and few more in Premier League and Champions League. They scored fantastic 23 goals in all competitions during November, and there are no signals that this run is going to end anytime soon.
Bournemouth is having a decent season, and despite three defeats on the bounce, they are 8th in the table, just one point behind Manchester United. They were a bit unlucky in their recent games, and lost the match against Arsenal simply thanks to bad luck or bad day of one single player - Jefferson Lerma scored own goal, was 'guilty' for a second Gunners' goal, and was unlucky enough to hit the post in dying minutes of the match.
But, all that counts at the end of the day are points, and Bournemouth failed to pick any in last three games.
On the plus side, today match at Etihad will be the last in the tough schedule for the Cherries, and in next three games, they will have two 'easier' opponents in Huddersfield and Wolves, alongside a trip to Liverpool.
Head to head
Bournemouth failed to beat Manchester City in any competitive game. They lost their last 6 games against City, while trips to Etihad finished in three heavy defeats, 1-5 in 2015, and 0-4 in 2016 and 2017. But to be honest, there are no many sides that managed better record against Manchester City in last 3 seasons.
Bournemouth is attacking side with plenty of pace and power up front, and if Eddie Howe sticks to the game plan he used in most of the Cherries' games this season, they will be swept aside by ruthless City. If they have a go on City, they may score but could finish with 4 or 5 again in their own net. Otherwise, they may lose like 2-0 or something, as normal sides do, and that would be easily forgotten.
I doubt that Eddie Howe will go to explicitly defend at Etihad, and you don't have to be a genius to expect goals in this match. City are huge favorites in this one, and betting wise there's no much value in a straight win or plain over 2.5 goals in this match, but taking both teams to score at Betfred (at evens) looks like a decent bet.