By 90Min
February 28, 2019

Manchester City travel to Bournemouth on Saturday as they continue their hunt for a second successive Premier League title. 

City have the opportunity to overtake leaders Liverpool, who go away to Everton in the Merseyside derby on Sunday. Meanwhile, their opponents are pushing for what would be an impressive top half finish.

PAUL ELLIS/GettyImages

Check out 90min's preview for Saturday's clash below.


Where to Watch

When is Kick Off? Saturday 2 March
What Time is Kick Off? 15:00 (GMT)
Where is it Played? Vitality Stadium
TV Channel/Live Stream? BBC Final Score/BT Sport Score
Referee? Kevin Friend

Team News

Bournemouth midfielder Jefferson Lerma serves the second of his two-game ban after receiving his tenth yellow card of the league campaign.

Injuries have wreaked havoc on Eddie Howe's squad with a knee and ankle problem depriving them of standout performers Callum Wilson and David Brooks respectively. Lewis Cook and Simon Francis are both out for the remainder of the season with both knee ligament damage.

During their Carabao Cup final triumph, City lost key men in Aymeric Laporte and Fernandinho, the pair joining Gabriel Jesus and John Stones on the sidelines. However, there is the possibility the vibrant Benjamin Mendy could return at the Vitality Stadium, helping to ease Pep Guardiola's defensive concerns.

BEN STANSALL/GettyImages

Predicted Lineups

Bournemouth Boruc; Clyne, Mepham, Ake, Smith; Ibe, Surman, Gosling, Fraser; Solanke, King.
Manchester City Ederson; Walker, Otamendi, Kompany, Zinchenko; Gundogan, D. Silva, De Bruyne; B. Silva, Sterling, Aguero.

Head to Head Record

City have been victorious in all seven of their Premier League meetings with Bournemouth. The aggregate score of 24-3 for those matches makes difficult reading for Eddie Howe and his cohort. 

Delving deeper into the past is no more encouraging for Bournemouth; they have never beaten City, regardless of the competition. A couple of draws in League Division Two came in 1999 and 1989, but these are littered among a further four defeats. 

With a dismal record against the Citizens in both the 20th and 21st century, Howe will certainly hope that history doesn't repeat itself.


Recent Form

The visitors go into the clash off the back of an excellent week. They dismissed West Ham at the Etihad Stadium thanks to a contentious penalty from Sergio Aguero mere days after claiming their first silverware in what is shaping up to be a momentous season.

Lifting the Carabao Cup capped off a mesmerising start to 2019 for Guardiola's men. Coupled with an away leg victory over Schalke in the Champions League, it keeps City on course for an unprecedented quadruple. 

Bar Newcastle, they have swept aside all comers since the turn of the year, with a handful of truly eye-catching results in that run. 

Michael Regan/GettyImages

Conversely, Bournemouth's heavy defeat at the hands of Arsenal in midweek means they have taken just one point from their past four Premier League matches. Worryingly, they have only netted twice in that run.

The Cherries have been inconsistent this calendar year, recording a respectable win over the Hammers and a stunning 4-0 thrashing of Chelsea, whilst also falling to disappointing defeats against Cardiff, Brighton and Everton.

Their failure to recreate the scintillating form of 2018 is likely influenced by the aforementioned injuries they have suffered. Nevertheless, Howe will demand the situation is rectified, regardless of squad depletion.

Here's how the sides have fared in their previous five fixtures:

Bournemouth Manchester City
Arsenal 5-1 Bournemouth (27/2) Manchester City 1-0 West Ham United (27/2)
Bournemouth 1-1 Wolves (23/2) Chelsea 0-0 (3-4 pens) Manchester City (24/2)
Liverpool 3-0 Bournemouth (9/2) Schalke 2-3 Manchester City (20/2)
Cardiff City 2-0 Bournemouth (2/2) Newport County 1-4 Manchester City (16/2)
Bournemouth 4-0 Chelsea (30/1) Manchester City 6-0 Chelsea (10/2)

Prediction

City have been in electric form since the turn of the year, tearing teams apart with incisive passing and deadly combination play. 

They were not at their stellar best during the League Cup final and the slender victory over West Ham, so they will view a trip to the misfiring Cherries as the ideal opportunity to get back on track. 

OLI SCARFF/GettyImages

Bournemouth's recent performances differ greatly from those of City. Perhaps more significantly, they are without a number of crucial players for this game. Confidence is low, though they will be boosted by the absence of the influential Fernandinho from City's engine room.

The contrasting moods in each camp, combined with the catalogue of key men missing for Howe, should see City leave the Vitality Stadium with three points. It should be comfortable, though Bournemouth may be spared humiliation.

Prediction: Bournemouth 0-2 Manchester City

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