Chelsea will be hoping to get back to winning ways in the Premier League when they host Bournemouth at Stamford Bridge this weekend.
The Blues have lost twice in their previous three league outings, including a 3-1 defeat to Everton last time out, but face a Bournemouth side low on confidence and very much out of form.
Eddie Howe has seen his side lose five consecutive games, and the Cherries are now circling the drain, sitting just a point above the relegation zone.
So, can Lampard bounce back from defeat against the Toffees and get Chelsea’s quest for a top four finish back on track? Or will Howe stop the rot and spring a surprise in west London?
Read on for Chelsea vs Bournemouth preview, predictions, team news, TV coverage information and more.
When is Chelsea vs Bournemouth and where can I watch live?
Competition: Premier League
Venue: Stamford Bridge
Date: Saturday, 14 December 2019
Kick-off: 3:00 PM (UK time)
TV coverage (UK): N/A
Last five meetings: Chelsea vs Bournemouth
30 Jan 2019: Bournemouth 4-0 Chelsea (Premier League)
19 Dec 2018: Chelsea 1-0 Bournemouth (League Cup)
01 Sep 2018: Chelsea 2-0 Bournemouth (Premier League)
31 Jan 2018: Chelsea 0-3 Bournemouth (Premier League)
20 Dec 2017: Chelsea 2-1 Bournemouth (League Cup)
Aggregate Score: Chelsea (LWWLW) 5-8 Bournemouth (WLLWL)
Ones to watch
Chelsea: Mateo Kovacic
The Croat had previously failed to score a single goal in any competition for two seasons prior to netting against Valencia last month, but he now has two in five games and is really starting to come into his own.
His ability to get the ball from deep and surge forward, operating almost as a release valve in central midfield, has seen him become a central cog in Frank Lampard’s side. His industry will be invaluable if Chelsea are to exert an iron grip in the middle of the park against Bournemouth.
Key stat: Mateo Kovacic has made more passes than any other Chelsea player in the Premier League this season (1100).
Bournemouth: Ryan Fraser
The Bournemouth winger was truly exceptional last season as he registered the second-most assists in the Premier League (14), but for one reason or another, he hasn’t quite been able to replicate that form this time round. Fraser’s contract expires in the summer, and there doesn’t appear to be any signs of a forthcoming extension, so perhaps the looming uncertainty has somewhat stifled his ability to perform consistently on the pitch.
That said, he remains a key creator for Bournemouth and will be indispensable if the Cherries are to get anything from the capital this weekend.
Key stat: Ryan Fraser has created more chances (21) and registered more assists (3) than any other Bournemouth player in the Premier League this season.
Fikayo Tomori and Olivier Giroud missed the Champions League win over Lille on Tuesday and are a doubt for this weekend’s match. Marco van Ginkel and Ruben Loftus-Cheek remain long-term absentees for the Blues
Predicted XI: Kepa; Azpilicueta, Rudiger, Zouma, Emerson; Kante, Jorginho, Kovacic; Willian, Pulisic, Abraham.
Subscribe to Squawka’s Youtube channel here.
Part of Bournemouth’s demise these past few weeks has been due to their growing injury problems. The big news for the Cherries is that Callum Wilson, Nathan Ake and Adam Smith are all out of this contest, meaning Howe is left with an exceptionally threadbare squad.
The trio join Steve Cook, Junior Stanislas, Charlie Daniels and David Brooks on the sidelines, while Lloyd Kelly is unlikely to feature, and Josh King faces a late fitness test.
Predicted XI: Ramsdale; Francis, Mepham, Simpson, Rico; Groeneveld, Lerma, Cook, Billing, Fraser; Solanke.
Chelsea picked up a solid win in midweek and will be desperate to put the Everton defeat behind them. Against a very depleted Bournemouth side, Lampard should have little trouble navigating his way past this contest and piling further misery on the South Coast club.
Scoreline prediction: Chelsea 3-0 Bournemouth