By Ben Bonsey
Injury struck Bournemouth take on a rejuvenated Chelsea side today at Stamford Bridge.
Both teams come into the clash on a satisfying note with both clubs picking up draws last weekend - Bournemouth faced a strong Everton side in which could be classed as the game of the season.
A 98th minute equaliser from Stanislas sent Dean Court into ecstasy as AFC Bournemouth managed to grab a point with the last few kicks of the game in a thrilling 3-3 draw.
Reflecting on last week’s result, Cherries boss Eddie Howe said: “Most certainly a nice feeling at the end of the game, the contrasting emotions in those last few minutes were so extreme.”
“You hope a result like that can really boost the confidence of the players and that belief system you need to win games and get points in games. The Premier League for me so far is all about picking up points wherever you can.”
Chelsea took on Tottenham Hotspur last week at White Hart Lane in a gruelling 0-0 draw. The Blues started to look like the club of seasons past as they fought hard to keep the elusive clean sheet they have been missing most of the season.
Eddie Howe went on to say: “The way they played against Tottenham I thought defensively they were excellent. I don’t think you can doubt there attacking quality when you look at the players they have you know sooner or later they are going to score goals.”
“[we have to] not play the history, not to play the crowds, the stadiums, just to play the games.”
Bournemouth have been struck with yet more injury troubles this weekend and Howe refused to mention whether Federici would be ready for today’s game: “Whenever you get injuries, it is a test and a challenge for your squad to adapt.”
“Certain people have been given opportunities that maybe would not have expected to get them, but they have grasped them in recent weeks.”
Chelsea on the other hand have started to recover from injury issues with Thibaut Courtois and Matic both expected to return for the Blues.
Bournemouth only sit 5 points behind Chelsea after 14 games. However, the uncharacteristic start from the Blues has left them in an unnatural position towards the relegation zone.
Chelsea, even with their exceptional bad form, look favourites for this one as it is hard to pick any real weaknesses in their squad.