Despite Bournemouth being bottom of the Premier League (PL) table, the battle for survival is very close between the bottom six clubs and hope is still not lost for the “Cherries”, who they sit just three points behind Leicester in fifteenth place. The men led by Gary O’Neil come from suffering a dramatic goal in the 97th minute that declared the defeat 3-2 against Arsenal last day, despite being up 2-0, meaning the third time this season that they blew such an advantage to end in defeat.
Conceding late goals has become a worrying issue for the Cherries, with the owners of PL’s worst defense of the current campaign having conceded eight goals after the 80th minute – the most in the league. The fans at Vitality Stadium will feel they can play a key role in ensuring the goals conceded tally against Liverpool is not added up and perhaps even encourage their team to try for a surprise result as Bournemouth have won nine of their last 13 PL points playing at home.
That said, Liverpool could still be in a cloud after recording their biggest win ever over arch rivals Manchester United the previous day in a resounding 7-0 thrashing. That scoreline was not far removed from the 9-0 thrashing of Bournemouth in the previous meeting between the clubs at Anfield, marking their seventh successive win over their host, with an impressive 28 goals scored and just one conceded in that span. .
A dominance of this magnitude should make the “Reds” confident of extending their unbeaten five-game (W4, D1) run in the PL, a run that has put them back in contention for a Top 4 finish in the table. Another win here would see them (at least momentarily) edge past Tottenham Hotspur into fourth, and after keeping a clean sheet during their current unbeaten run, Jürgen Klopp should be reassured that he can continue his fine run.
Players to watch: Bournemouth’s Philip Billing scored the second fastest goal in PL history against Arsenal (9.11 seconds), with four of his five goals this season coming as openers for his team. Mohamed Salah, another man who already has his name engraved in the record books, continues to rewrite Liverpool history with his 128 and 129 goals against Manchester United seeing him become the club’s all-time PL top scorer, with eight of those goals being registered in their seven games against Bournemouth.
Highlight: Liverpool have dropped just two points after taking the lead this season in the PL score (W12, D1) – the lowest in the league.