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Preview: Bristol City vs. Bournemouth - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Wednesday's Championship clash between Bristol City and Bournemouth, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Nigel Pearson will take charge of his first home game as manager of Bristol City when they host Bournemouth on Wednesday evening, with the Robins looking to claim their third successive Championship victory.

The Cherries, meanwhile, travel to Ashton Gate after failing to win any of their last four away matches in the league.


Match preview

Bristol City's Kasey Palmer celebrates with team mates after scoring their second goal on February 27, 2021© Reuters

Nigel Pearson began his managerial reign at Bristol City with an impressive 3-1 away victory over high-flying Swansea City last weekend.

Second-half strikes from Nahki Wells, Kasey Palmer and Antoine Semenyo helped the Robins come from behind to claim successive league wins for the first time since November.

Despite admitting his side were second best on the day, Pearson believed his players deserved "unbelievable" credit for sticking to their task and snatching all three points at the Liberty Stadium.

Victory on Saturday saw Bristol City move into the top half of the Championship, with just seven points separating themselves from Wednesday's opponents Bournemouth, who currently occupy the final playoff spot.

The last time the Robins hosted a league encounter with the Cherries was on Boxing Day back in 2006, when they let a two-goal lead slip to draw 2-2.

Pearson has previously faced Bournemouth on three occasions as a manager and has won all three meetings, twice in charge at Leicester City in the 2013-14 campaign and once with Watford in January 2020.

Bristol City will be hoping that they can put recent woes aside and build on their last two victories with a third in succession on Wednesday, which could push them as high as ninth in the table.

Bournemouth's Arnaut Danjuma celebrates scoring their first goal on February 27, 2021© Reuters

Bournemouth got back to winning ways as Arnaut Danjuma's 61st-minute strike sealed a slender 1-0 victory against playoff rivals Watford last weekend, in an ill-tempered game that saw both teams finish with 10 men.

After Hornets striker Joao Pedro was shown a second yellow card for a late tackle, Jack Wilshere – who was only on the pitch for 15 minutes – was also dismissed after a multi-player stoppage-time brawl.

The win for Jonathan Woodgate's men ensured the Cherries remain inside the playoffs, one point ahead of Barnsley, who they will face at the Vitality Stadium in less than two weeks' time.

Bournemouth have already beaten Bristol City this campaign, with Danjuma also scoring the only goal on this occasion in a 1-0 victory back in October.

The Cherries have fared much better on home soil so far this season but travel to Ashton Gate on Wednesday having won only four of their 16 away matches in the Championship.

With both Barnsley and Cardiff nipping at Bournemouth's heels after putting together impressive runs of form, Woodgate cannot afford for his side to slip up in the coming weeks, with three points on Wednesday required if they are to stay inside the top six.

Bristol City Championship form: LLLLWW
Bristol City form (all competitions): LLLLWW

Bournemouth Championship form: WDWLLW
Bournemouth form (all competitions): WDWLLW


Team News

Bournemouth's Phillip Biling celebrates scoring against Rotherham United in the Championship on February 17, 2021© Reuters

Bristol City remain without forward Andreas Weimann, as he is suffering from a cruciate ligament rupture sustained in October last year.

Nigel Pearson opted to start with a 3-5-2 formation against Swansea, a system that has been used by Bristol City for the majority of this campaign, and he may continue with this formation once again on Wednesday.

Kasey Palmer, who has started each of the last three matches, is likely to keep his place in midfield alongside Adam Nagy and Tyreeq Bakinson.

Bournemouth midfielder Jack Wilshere is suspended after being shown a red card against Watford last weekend.

Jonathan Woodgate may decide to match the Robins and use the same formation, one that was also used in the reverse fixture last October.

Dominic Solanke is set to start up front with Shane Long, while midfielder Philip Billing could return to the starting lineup alongside ever-present duo Lewis Cook and Jefferson Lerma.

Bristol City possible starting lineup:
Bentley; Vyner, Mariappa, Kalas; Hunt, Massengo, Bakinson, Nagy, Towler; Diedhiou, Wells

Bournemouth possible starting lineup:
Begovic; Carter-Vickers, S. Cook, Kelly; Smith, L. Cook, Lerma, Billing, Rico; Solanke, Long


SM words green background

We say: Bristol City 1-1 Bournemouth

A new manager bounce at Bristol City is already in full swing and the Robins will fancy their chances of claiming another three points against an inconsistent Bournemouth outfit.

However, the visitors have already defeated the hosts earlier this campaign and are likely to make it difficult for them on Wednesday evening.

Both sides will be looking to build on victories last weekend, but a tight encounter is expected which could see a score draw played out at Ashton Gate.



Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting under 2.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Under 2.5:data


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Bournemouth manager Jonathan Woodgate pictured on February 20, 2021
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Norwich CityNorwich41279565283790
2Watford412410759273282
3Swansea CitySwansea412291050311975
4Brentford402013771403173
5Bournemouth4120111066402671
6Barnsley412181254441071
7Reading4219101357461167
8Cardiff CityCardiff4216121458461260
9Millwall411416114140158
10Middlesbrough41169164845357
11Queens Park RangersQPR411511154850-256
12Stoke CityStoke411413144546-155
13Luton TownLuton40158173546-1153
14Blackburn RoversBlackburn421311185448650
15Bristol City41155214055-1550
16Nottingham ForestNott'm Forest411213163439-549
17Preston North EndPreston41146214155-1448
18Coventry CityCoventry411112183756-1945
19Birmingham CityBirmingham411112183150-1945
20Huddersfield TownHuddersfield411111194362-1944
21Derby CountyDerby421110213148-1743
22Rotherham UnitedRotherham39116224153-1239
23Sheffield WednesdaySheff Weds41118223454-2035
24Wycombe WanderersWycombe4189243064-3433

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