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Dec 14, 2019 at 3pm UK
Chelsea
0-1
Bournemouth
 
FT(HT: 0-0)
Gosling (84')
/esi/1339/6_G_1_92667/index.html?art_id=382549&game_id=92667&sport_id=1&ESI

Preview: Chelsea vs. Bournemouth - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Chelsea vs. Bournemouth - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole provides team news, predicted lineups and a full preview of Saturday's Premier League fixture between Chelsea and Bournemouth.
By , Senior Reporter | 1mo

Chelsea head into their Premier League fixture with Bournemouth looking to strengthen their position in the top four of the standings.

However, the Blues have recorded just three points from a possible 12, while the Cherries have suffered five successive defeats in the top flight.


Match preview


When Chelsea put together a six-match winning streak in the Premier League earlier this season, Frank Lampard would have felt that his relatively young squad were progressing fluidly along the right path.

However, three top-flight defeats in four games and only scrapping through to the last 16 of the Champions League have acted as a wake-up call to the Blues, who are now under pressure to perform in both competitions.

While there is an equal amount of excitement and trepidation about the prospect of facing one of European football's big-hitters in February, Lampard is aware that he needs to witness some kind of consistency on the domestic scene for the club to have a realistic chance of going further in that tournament.

The former midfielder will hope that lessons are learned from the manner of their 2-1 win over Lille in midweek, a game which should have been over before the French outfit found a way back into the contest.

There have been times this season when the West Londoners have blown away their opponents, only to show similar lapses of concentration which have ultimately not hurt them in terms of points.


However, with no solution being found in the defensive third of the pitch, there is a greater onus on the club's attacking players to improve their return at the other end, rather than responsibility falling purely on the shoulders of Tammy Abraham.

While the academy graduate has contributed 13 goals and four assists, he is not receiving enough help from his teammates, who have tended to score in clusters rather than on a regular basis.

A lack of a clinical touch has been present in Chelsea's last six appearances, and Lampard will reiterate the need for more composure in the opposition box if his team are going to maintain their place in the top four.

Facing a Bournemouth side short of confidence is arguably the perfect chance for Chelsea to live up to their manager's expectations, although Eddie Howe will also feel the same about his team's efforts to overturn a negative period of results.

Since overcoming Manchester United at the start of November, the South Coast outfit have failed to record any points from their last five matches.


With his side now sitting just one point above the relegation zone, Howe has acknowledged that he has concerns, especially having failed to trouble the scoresheet against Crystal Palace and Liverpool respectively.

Missing out against the former felt like the biggest setback, with Bournemouth struggling versus an Eagles team which had Mamadou Sakho sent off during the early stages.

While the absences of David Brooks and Josh King have proven significant, Callum Wilson has continued on a run of nine games without a goal, while former Chelsea man Dominic Solanke is still yet to score since his arrival at the Vitality Stadium in January.

Howe deserves some credit for keeping faith with the pair, who sometimes work in tandem in a 4-4-2 formation, but the time has probably come for a change in strategy.

Despite Howe potentially being in two minds over implementing something new for a game of this magnitude, the Englishman may feel that he needs a different tactic in place ahead of home encounters with Burnley and Arsenal.

Whichever route Howe takes heading into the game in the capital, he will call on improvements in all areas of the pitch, which is becoming increasingly necessary if Bournemouth are to avoid becoming embroiled in a battle to beat the drop.

Chelsea Premier League form: WWLLWL
Chelsea form (all competitions): LDLWLW

Bournemouth Premier League form: WLLLLL


Team News


With Chelsea having a free midweek after Saturday's fixture, Lampard may opt to keep changes to a minimum.

However, Mason Mount could be brought back into the team, potentially in place of Mateo Kovacic, who has played a lot of football in recent weeks.

Reece James is also in line to be brought back into the side, possibly at the expense of Cesar Azpilicueta.

In a bid to end the club's dismal form, Howe could strengthen his midfield with the addition of Lewis Cook, with Solanke dropping down to the substitutes' bench.

Jack Simpson should replace the injured Nathan Ake at the back, while Howe must decide whether to take any risks with the fitness of Steve Cook and King.

Chelsea possible starting lineup:
Arrizabalaga; James, Rudiger, Zouma, Palmieri; Jorginho, Kante; Willian, Mount, Pulisic; Abraham

Bournemouth possible starting lineup:
Ramsdale; Francis, Mepham, Simpson, Rico; L.Cook, Lerma, Billing; Groenveld, H.Wilson, C.Wilson


Head To Head

Saturday's match represents just the 16th competitive meeting between the two clubs, with Chelsea registering 11 wins in comparison to four victories for Bournemouth.

However, since earning promotion to the top flight in 2015, the Cherries have prevailed on three occasions from eight attempts in the league, which includes two triumphs at Stamford Bridge.

However, Chelsea recorded victories and clean sheets in home outings against Bournemouth in the Premier League and EFL Cup during the back end of 2018.



We say: Chelsea 2-1 Bournemouth

Despite Bournemouth's recent form, we cannot help but feel that a trip to Stamford Bridge is a good opportunity for the Cherries to get back on track. However, while the Blues have been unconvincing in front of their own fans this season, they may be able to grind out a hard-fought win.


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Premier League Table
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Liverpool22211052143864
2Manchester CityMan City24163565273851
3Leicester CityLeicester23143648232545
4Chelsea2412484132940
5Manchester UnitedMan Utd239773627934
6Wolverhampton WanderersWolves2381053430434
7Sheffield UnitedSheff Utd248972523233
8Tottenham HotspurSpurs238783631531
9Southampton2494113142-1131
10Arsenal2461263234-230
11Crystal Palace247982228-630
12Everton2486102835-730
13Newcastle UnitedNewcastle2486102436-1230
14Burnley2383122638-1227
15Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2467112734-725
16Aston Villa2474133145-1425
17West Ham UnitedWest Ham2265112634-823
18Bournemouth2465132337-1423
19Watford2458112136-1523
20Norwich CityNorwich2345142345-2217
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Premier League Table
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Liverpool22211052143864
2Manchester CityMan City24163565273851
3Leicester CityLeicester23143648232545
4Chelsea2412484132940
5Manchester UnitedMan Utd239773627934
6Wolverhampton WanderersWolves2381053430434
7Sheffield UnitedSheff Utd248972523233
8Tottenham HotspurSpurs238783631531
9Southampton2494113142-1131
10Arsenal2461263234-230
11Crystal Palace247982228-630
12Everton2486102835-730
13Newcastle UnitedNewcastle2486102436-1230
14Burnley2383122638-1227
15Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2467112734-725
16Aston Villa2474133145-1425
17West Ham UnitedWest Ham2265112634-823
18Bournemouth2465132337-1423
19Watford2458112136-1523
20Norwich CityNorwich2345142345-2217
Scroll for more - Tap for full version
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