FILE PHOTO: Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe, as play resumes behind closed doors following the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) (Reuters)
Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe believes his relegation-threatened side can pull off a shock and get something out of Wednesday’s daunting Premier League trip to Manchester City.
Sunday’s 4-1 win over Leicester City, Bournemouth’s first victory in 10 league games, offered some hope that the south coast club could secure a sixth successive top-flight season.
But they remain in dire straights in 18th position, three points behind Watford and West Ham United who are just above the relegation zone and who play each other on Friday.
Bournemouth face Southampton at home and finish the campaign at Everton, but first Howe must figure out a way to stop a City side who have won their last two games 5-0.
City have won all nine of their previous Premier League games against Bournemouth.
“Manchester City is a very different game to any other you face in the Premier League,” Howe told a news conference on Tuesday. “They’ve got some unique qualities, an outstanding manager, brilliant players.
“It’s a huge task at hand but I believe it’s possible. If we can put it all together, we’re more than capable of getting a result.”
The reality is that Bournemouth’s chances of staying up are more likely to be determined by picking up a couple of wins from their last two games and they will not be helped by injuries.
Defender Nathan Ake is likely to miss the rest of the season with a groin injury.
“It’s a minor groin injury for Nathan,” Howe said. “It’s not too serious. I don’t know whether we’ll see Nathan again this season. It’s not a definite no, but it’s not a definite yes.”
Bournemouth will also be without Chris Mepham, Simon Francis and Adam Smith for the trip to City.
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