By Ben Bonsey
A rejuvenated Cherries side look to make it three wins out of three in the Premier League.
Cherries take on a steady West Brom outfit at the Hawthorns today as they look to propel themselves onto 19 points, potentially climbing 5 points clear of the relegation zone.
After emphatic and historic wins away to Chelsea and at home to Manchester United respectively, Cherries look in good stead coming into this game week 17 fixture.
West Brom on the other hand have not lost in four. However, three have ended in a draw. They also have only picked up eight points at home this season, the second lowest in the league after 20th placed Aston Villa.
With West Brom also being crowned with the lowest average possession stat, 39%, we could well be in for a caging game between the respective sides.
Cherries and The Baggies have not met in the league since the 1992-1993 season, Howe being aged just 15, in the third tier of English football. West Brom came out triumphant in both home and away legs.
More recently both clubs met in the league cup last season, with Bournemouth in the Championship and West Brom in the Premier League. Cherries won 2-1, with Wilson scoring an 86th minute winner to send Dean Court into ecstasy, and Bournemouth into the last eight of the league cup for the first time in their history.
Eddie Howe once played against West Brom in the FA Cup, scoring the winning goal in 1999 to send Cherries into the fourth round.
Eddie Howe is expected to name an unchanged line-up for the third successive game, but it is working.
Slight niggles to King and Pugh could leave them side-lined, but both are expected to return and start for Cherries.
The Baggies are hopeful Sessegnon will return for the club for today’s game. Claudio Yacob has been ruled out on the grounds of family bereavement.
West Brom 0 AFC Bournemouth 1
Today’s game will be a cagey affair, with ex-Cherries boss Pulis always keeping his sides organised and shaped. It will be hard for this Cherries side to break down the West Brom philosophy, but the last two results have proved that anything is possible.
It is all well and good beating the top clubs, but games like today are the must win games. These games up against the teams in and around the same position, are the real six pointers. Games to distance yourselves from an ever growing relegation survival.
In my opinion I think it could be quite a stalemate game today, but I honestly believe AFC Bournemouth can make it three wins on the trot in this historic part of an historic season. I am going for 0-1 to AFC Bournemouth.