AFC Bournemouth welcome Brighton & Hove Albion to Vitality Stadium for Friday night’s televised Premier League clash.
*Article originally written by me and published on AFC Bournemouth’s club website: afcb.co.uk*
Here, afcb.co.uk assesses five key points ahead of the visit of Chris Hughton’s side.
In search of points
After an encouraging last home outing against Manchester City, Eddie Howe will be hoping to see a performance of a similar manner as his side go in search of their first Premier League points of the new season. Brighton ended their wait for a win last weekend courtesy of a 3-1 victory over West Bromwich Albion.
A game which promises goals
This will be the 105th meeting between the two sides in a fixture which has only previously played out five goalless draws. With a history dating back to 1923, the Cherries have celebrated 39 wins against the Sussex side and are unbeaten in their last six encounters. Bournemouth have only lost one of their eight games at home to the Seagulls this century as they prepare to face them in the English top flight for the first time.
These two sides last met two and a half years ago during the Cherries 2014/15 Football League Championship winning season, with Howe’s side doing the league double over the Seagulls. A 2-0 win at the AMEX in April 2015 featured nine of the same Bournemouth players in the 18-man squad which featured against Arsenal just last Saturday. Players which started in both matches included Steve Cook, Charlie Daniels and Harry Arter. By comparison, of the 18 players named in Brighton’s squad that day only two were named in the squad in their win over West Brom this season.
Friday night home fixtures
The Cherries will play their first competitive game on a Friday night since January 2015. In that match the side ran out 2-0 winners against then promotion rivals Watford 2-0 courtesy of goals from Yann Kermorgant and Matt Ritchie. Howe’s side played on a Friday night five times in their title-winning season and boasted a strong record, winning four and drawing one.
Bournemouth won all three of their home fixtures against newly-promoted clubs last season in the league. Relegated Hull City were the first to suffer at the hands of Howe’s side in a 6-1 win for the Cherries in October last year. Middlesbrough suffered a similar fate the following April, losing 4-0 before facing the drop. Burnley visited the south coast in the Cherries’ final home game of the 2016/17 season and also left empty handed thanks to a late winner from Joshua King in a 2-1 victory.