Two sides who quite frankly embarrassed themselves while crashing out of the EFL Cup in midweek, Bournemouth and West Ham will turn their attentions back to Premier League duties when they meet at the Vitality on Saturday afternoon.
Watching League One outfit Burton Albion pick up a 2-0 win over Eddie Howe’s men and secure a spot in the fourth round on Wednesday night, fans on the South Coast are desperate for their side to refined a similar level that has helped them pick up back-to-back 3-1 wins after returning from the international break.
In an almost identical position, Saturday’s hosts are not the only side who have been deservedly ridiculed after a woeful display against third-tier opposition.
Suffering a 4-0 hammering away at Oxford United, a side sat 12th in League One, Hammers boss Manuel Pellegrini saw his side’s six-match unbeaten run come to a very abrupt end.
You might be interested to know that with Bournemouth picking up back-to-back victories over West Ham last season, the Cherries can be found at 29/20 with Bet365 to refined their winning touch this weekend.
Bournemouth calling on a response
With Bournemouth Head Coach Eddie Howe criticizing his side’s display on the road in midweek, there is no doubt that the one-time Burnley boss, along with fans on the South Coast will be calling on an immediate response.
Despite crashing out of the EFL Cup on Wednesday away at the Pirelli Stadium, the Cherries have shown some much-needed improvements after returning from the international break.
Picking up a 3-1 win and South Coast bragging rights at Southampton last week, Saturday’s hosts have landed back-to-back 3-1 wins and have their sights set on securing a top-half finish this season.
If Bournemouth are to make a return to winning ways at the Vitality, then Howe will be looking on Callum Wilson to lead their charge.
After having to settle for a place on the bench at Burton in midweek, the England international has bagged four goals in his last three Premier League appearances and the 27-year-old can be found at 6/4 with Ladbrokes to extend that run on Saturday.
West Ham come crashing back down to earth
While West Ham may have picked up a very eye-catching 2-0 win at home against Manchester United last weekend and receive a string of plaudits, the Hammers came crashing back down to earth on Wednesday.
Putting in a season-worst display and slumping to a 4-0 defeat away at League One Oxford in midweek, Saturday’s guests are another side in drastic need of a response.
While they may have also seen their EFL Cup dreams come crashing apart on the road, Manuel Pellegrini’s men have also shown some top-flight improvements.
Now unbeaten in their last five Premier League outings, their best run since the end of January, the Hammers have a European return in their sights.
West Ham can be found at 9/2 with William Hill to clinch a maiden top-six finish, only behind Leicester who sit at 11/8.
Expected to be recalled to Pellegrini’s starting XI this weekend is Ukraine international Andriy Yarmolenko.
Finding the net against the Red Devils last time out, the former Borussia Dortmund winger is pencilled in at 12/5 with Bet365 to once again find the net at the Vitality.