West Ham United vs AFC Bournemouth: Preview & Prediction
The first game at the new London Stadium will play host to Eddie Howe’s south-coast outfit.
The visitors approach the fixture looking to bounce back after their comfortable 3-1 defeat at the hands of title-chasing Manchester United.
Equally, West Ham also experienced a tough start on the opening day, losing away to Antonio Conte’s Chelsea after a last minute goal from Diego Costa.
For both of these sides, this game represents their true start to the new season and is sure to play a crucial role in the momentum of their upcoming fixtures.
West Ham will be looking to make their new home a fortress as this stability could prove key in chasing the Champions League spaces.
Although, the Hammers may feel fatigued after their European encounter midweek in Romania against Astra Giurgiu.
Manager Slavan Bilic will be hoping that his players can deliver on their home patch in order to make a statement for upcoming away teams visiting the London Stadium in the future.
Meanwhile opposite boss Howe has wasted no time in responding to last week’s defeat, as defensive reinforcements have already been brought in in the form of Marc Wilson from Stoke City.
The Irish defender brings in a wealth of Premier League experience after his long spell at the Potters. Bournemouth hope in the long-term that their faith in younger players will pay off in order to beat the drop this season in a league that seems to be more competitive than ever before.
New signing Sofiane Feghouli looks to be out with a calf injury, while Andre Ayew, Aaron Cresswell, Diafra Sakho and Manuel Lanzini are out with longer term problems.
Tyrone Mings and Junior Stanislas are out until at least September, but there are no fresh injury concerns for Howe’s side.
League Positions: West Ham – 17th (0pts); Bournemouth – 20th (0pts)
Last Meeting: Bournemouth 1-3 West Ham (January 12, 2016)
League Form: West Ham -WLWLL; Bournemouth – LLDLL
Key Men: West Ham – Dimitri Payet; Bournemouth – Jordon Ibe
Shoot Says: West Ham 1-1 Bournemouth