Written by billythekid
With a changed side on our visit to Wycombe Wanderers last Saturday which finished in a 1-0 defeat, AFCB are back home at Dean Court for their last game of the 46 game league season before the play-offs begin, the game against Stoke City on Saturday starts at the earlier time of 12.30 pm.
We may see a much stronger side fielded by Jonathan Woodgate as he prepares for the play-offs which will decide which league we will be in next season. It has been a season where we have had the unusual event in recent years of having two managers in a season. The 46 league game season has been mainly been two games in a week. Be good to go into the play-offs on the back of a win.
Stoke City’s best run of results was earlier in the season when they had an unbeaten run of five games in late September/October with three wins and two draws. The other five-game unbeaten run was in December with one win and four draws, before our away win at their ground at the beginning of January 0-1 with a goal scored by Junior Stanislas.
Stoke City are in a mid-table position (14th) going into their last game of the season, with nothing to play for. Their last six games have probably been their worst run of the season with 2 draws and 4 defeats. They started with two defeats, at home against Millwall, which finished 1-2 and then went down away 2-0 against Birmingham City. They then had two home games, drawing with Preston 0-0 and then losing 2-3 to Coventry City. Their next game was a 0-0 draw away at Nottingham Forest. Their most recent game ended in a home defeat 0-2 against Queens Park Rangers.
The last time we met the Potters at Dean Court was in the Premier League in February of the 2017-18 season. The Cherries went behind to a fifth-minute headed goal by Xherdan Shaqiri. AFCB came back in the second half with two goals in a nine-minute spell from substitutes Josh King who scored with a shot in the 70th minute and Lys Mousset who headed in on the 79th minute to give AFCB a win.
AFCB v Stoke
AFCB Team News
No news as yet on Junior Stanislas or the latest on Lloyd Kelly, but hopefully both will be available for selection for the play-off games. Steve Cook should be ok after being left out through injury last Saturday.
AFCB Player To Watch
Arnaut Danjuma is on top of his game at the moment and full of confidence.
Stoke City Team News
According to reports, they have 11 players out injured, plus others not 100% fit. The latest casualty is Nick Powell their leading scorer who looks like missing the game.
Stoke City Player To Watch
With so many out and some key players, difficult one to say. One of their younger players who has caught the eye this season is Harry Souttar.
Should Woodgate rest players ahead of the play-offs?
Kenya Cherrie said…
Guaranteed a spot inside the top six, Bournemouth will be eager to rediscover their best form ahead of the play-offs after suffering back-to-back 1-0 Championship defeats. Notably, they’ve not suffered three consecutive losses since July 2020 and you’d have to go back to October 2019 for the last time they went three games without a goal.
The ‘Cherries’ have exhibited somewhat of an all-or-nothing approach to their previous 11 home league contests (W6, L5). They’ve also scored 50% (20) of their home Championship goals this season after the 60th minute, suggesting they’ll be at their most dangerous as the game progresses. But no matter when they come, goals should be guaranteed with the last six games at the Vitality Stadium producing an average of 3.50.
Stoke City’s 57 points mean they’ve already bettered their points return for each of the previous two campaigns, despite the fact they’re winless in six (D2, L4). Additionally, they’ve won only two of 17 league meetings with current top-nine clubs (D4, L11). One positive however is that they’ve gone unbeaten in the final league game in each of their previous nine seasons (W6, D3).
Michael O’Neill’s men have failed to score in seven of their previous 14 away trips (W1, D8, L5). But despite wins being rare, they’re tough to beat and are the only Championship team with double-digit away draws (ten). Furthermore, although they’ve picked up only one point across six away encounters when conceding first (D1, L5), they’ve netted the opener in their last three visits to Bournemouth (W1, D1, L1).
Players to watch: Bournemouth have an 85.71% win rate in Championship games when Arnaut Groeneveld has scored (W12, D1, L1). Meanwhile, Stoke striker Steven Fletcher has netted four of his last five goals after the 60th minute.
Hot stat: All five of Bournemouth’s defeats to bottom-half opposition came by an exact one-goal margin, they were also losing four at HT, and failed to score in three. – Join the conversation, click here.