ANALYST Adam Goodwin (@AGJournalism) shares his verdict on Saturday evening's Premier league fixture between Liverpool and Bournemouth from Anfield.
Liverpool v Bournemouth | Saturday 14th April 2018, 17:30 | BT Sport
Liverpool found out on Friday that they’d be hosting Roma in a Champions League semi-final at Anfield in a few weeks but, first, they need to focus on beating Bournemouth this weekend.
You can confidently say that Bournemouth are safe from relegation now, as they sit 10 points clear of 18th. But they’ll want to end the season in good form and they can start by shocking Liverpool this weekend.
Liverpool are coming into this game on the back of what is arguably their best result in years after beating Manchester City 5-1 on aggregate to reach the Champions League semi-final. They’ll undoubtedly be on a high heading into this game, but Jurgen Klopp is likely to give a few stars of Wednesday’s show a rest on Sunday.
Roberto Firmino is carrying a slight knock and Sadio Mane started both of Liverpool’s games within the last seven days. Just like the game versus Everton last weekend, Dominic Solanke and Danny Ings could be brought into the front three.
Despite being unbeaten in nearly a year, Liverpool’s home form hasn’t been untouchable. They’ve scored an average of just over two goals per-game at Anfield this season, and have been held to draws by Burnley, Everton and West Brom.
But when Klopp’s side turn up to games, they can really hammer teams. Their last game at home was a 5-0 thrashing to Watford, they’ve also beaten Swansea 5-0, Arsenal 4-0, and Huddersfield and Southampton 3-0.
So, depending on what Liverpool turn up, Bournemouth could be in for a mauling at Merseyside.
There could be a case for Bournemouth being “on the beach” from now until the end seeing as they’re all but safe from relegation. But Eddie Howe doesn’t seem like the type of manager to rest on his laurels and will be keen to get another decent result at Anfield.
Their only two trips to Anfield have ended 2-2 and a 1-0 defeat, so they’ve tended to perform well travelling to Mersyside. They also provided a remarkable comeback at the Vitality Stadium against Liverpool last season, which Lorius Karius is still having nightmares about…
Their away form since the turn of the year has been pretty impressive, picking up six points from seven games, beating Chelsea 3-0 at Stamford Bridge in one of those games. They’ve scored nine goals in those seven games and, against a potentially tired Liverpool defence, they’ll fancy themselves to increase their decent away form.
The betting angle
I fancy Bournemouth to put up a good fight at Anfield on Saturday evening, and I’m going to venture into the Asian Handicap markets.
When you look at Bournemouth’s decent away form and their ability to shock some of the big sides this season, I like the look of Bournemouth +1.25 at 7/4 with Unibet. If they lose by one you’ll pick up half of your winnings, and a draw or a Cherries win will see you pick up all your cash.
I’m also going to have a small punt on Bournemouth to score two or more, which is a decent 15/4 with Coral. This could be a huge price, especially with Ragnar Klavan replaces Virgil Van Dijk in the Liverpool back four!