Birmingham City will be looking to build upon their promising start to the season when they host AFC Bournemouth at St Andrew’s this evening.
The Blues managed to produce a spirited display against Sheffield United to seal a 1-0 victory on the opening weekend of the season before claiming a point in their meeting with Stoke City last Saturday.
Now set to face a Bournemouth side who managed to reach the play-offs during the previous campaign, Birmingham know that they will need to be at their very best to secure a positive result against Scott Parker’s side.
Whilst the likes of Lukas Jutkiewicz and Maxime Colin are expected to the line up for the Blues in today’s clash, it remains to be seen whether Tahith Chong will be able to make his return to action as the midfielder recently picked up a hamstring injury.
Meanwhile, fellow summer signing Dion Sanderson stepped up his recovery from an issue with his back by featuring for Birmingham’s Under-23 side earlier this week.
Although Bowyer’s side have kept back-to-back clean-sheets in the Championship, they could find it difficult to prevent their opponents from scoring as Bournemouth have already found the back of the net on four occasions at this level this season.
Ahead of today’s match-up, pundit David Prutton has revealed that he believes that the Cherries will seal a 2-0 victory over Birmingham.
Speaking to Sky Sports, the former Sheffield Wednesday midfielder said: “It will frustrate Lee Bowyer and the Birmingham fans that they can’t pack into St Andrew’s again in midweek, particularly as it means they can’t build on the positivity and momentum of their opening-day win at Sheffield United.
“Bournemouth showed their grit and determination to dig out the victory at Nottingham Forest with 10 men on Saturday, which will have delighted Scott Parker.
“I fancy them to use that result to kick on and get another win.”
GIVEMESPORT’s Joshua Cole says…
Whereas Bowyer will be under no illusion about the task that awaits his side in today’s clash, there is no reason why Birmingham cannot go on to record a positive result in this fixture.
By frustrating Bournemouth at St Andrew’s, the Blues could force their opponents into making mistakes.
Considering that the Cherries have already conceded three goals from crosses at this level during the current campaign, Jutkiewicz could be a menace in this clash as he has won 22 aerial duels in the Championship for Birmingham this season (as per WhoScored).
Providing that Birmingham are able to seal victory in-front of their own supporters, they may be able to use the momentum gained from this result to push on under the guidance of Bowyer in the coming months.
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