Bournemouth welcome Norwich City to the Vitaly Stadium in a huge Championship clash between two teams relegated from the Premier League last season.
Victory for either Bournemouth or Norwich could lift them as high as second depending on how Bristol City fare against Sheffield Wednesday earlier in day.
Lloyd Kelly is a doubt for Bournemouth with a tight hamstring suffered in Thursday’s 2-1 Carabao Cup exit at Manchester City.
Junior Stanislas could return after recovering from a knock that kept him sidelined during the Cherries’ 1-1 draw at Middlesbrough last weekend, whilst Charlie Daniels (knee) remains ruled out.
Norwich will welcome Emiliano Buendia and Marco Stiepermann back from respective shin and back injuries as both teams look to make their first appearances of this season.
Kieran Dowell (ankle) and Jacob Sorensen (knee) however are ruled out.
- Bournemouth have won just one of their last four league meetings against Norwich (W1, D1, L2).
- Norwich are unbeaten in three of their last five trips to Bournemouth in all competitions (W2, D1, L2).
- Bournemouth are yet to keep a clean sheet in the league this season.
Both teams have done a solid job to retain the core of their squads since relegation although Bournemouth have lost some top players in Nathan Ake, Ryan Fraser and Callum Wilson, yet have adapted well to life back in the second tier.
Jason Tindall’s Cherries however seem vulnerable still defensively but if their top guns can continue to perform up front, I can see a tight contest here against a Norwich team who twice had to fight from behind to draw with Preston last weekend, which shows just how much spirit is in this Canaries team.
Although a part of me does expect Bournemouth to edge this if they can tighten up and take heart from Thursday’s display at Man City, a draw does seem a good bet.
Prediction: Bournemouth 1-1 Norwich
Result: Bournemouth 1-0 Norwich