After a poor and sluggish performance against the Saints, the Cherries visit Stamford Bridge for the Boxing Day game against the league leaders Chelsea the form side of the league at the moment with 11 straight wins home and away.
The former Italian manager Antonio Conte took the job of Chelsea manager at the beginning of the season replacing Gus Hiddink who took on the job just before Christmas last year until the end of that season after the sacking of Jose Mourinho that month. Conte, while the Italian manager, took his team to the Quarter Final of Euro 2016, losing out in the penalty shoot-out after drawing with Germany 1-1.
Chelsea strengthened their side in the Summer with three signings over £30 million, these were Belgium striker Michy Batshuaiy from Marseille, French midfielder N`Golo Kante from Leicester City and Brazilian defender David Luiz from PSG. Also they brought in Spanish defender Marcus Alonso from Fiorentina for £23 million and Portugal goalkeeper Eduardo from Dinamo Zagreb for an undisclosed fee. Chelsea have sent out a number of players on loan, including Nathan Ake to AFCB.
After a poor 2015-2016 season by Chelsea standards , this season they are flying under the wing of Conte and at Stamford Bridge have won their last five matches. Away from home they have won the last six games. At home they have won 7, and lost 1, which was against Liverpool. Away from home they have won 7, drawn 1 and lost 1. Chelsea have won their last three games by 1-0.
Chelsea Team News:
They will be without their leading goal scorer Diego Costa, also missing will be N`Golo Kante, both players suspended. They will still have a very strong squad to pick from. Still out is John Terry.
Player to watch: Eden Hazard
Eden Hazard the Belgium attacking and tricky midfield player, has scored 8 Premier League goals this season with 1 assist. He is their second highest goal scorer so far this season after Diego Costa. Even though Hazard has been suffering with a knee injury he should be back for the game against AFCB.
AFC Bournemouth Team News:
Nathan Ake will miss this game against his parent club. This gives Eddie the opportunity to switch to the original back four, putting Adam Smith in at right back and Simon Francis back in his right side centre back role. Still no return dates for Junior Stanislas and Andrew Surman.
Player to watch: Harry Arter
We need Harry Arter back to his best and hope that is against Chelsea on Boxing Day.
Match Facts & Stats
In our two fixtures against Chelsea last season, AFCB won at Stamford Bridge by a late goal from our striker Glenn Murray (his goals this season taking Brighton towards the PL while on loan) and the game at Dean Court Chelsea took revenge and won 4-1. In all our fixtures against Chelsea, AFCB have won 2 and lost 5, we have never drawn.