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Middlesbrough vs Bournemouth prediction, preview, team news and more | EFL Championship 2020-21

Boro boss Neil Warnock will miss the game after testing positive for COVID-19 during the week
Boro boss Neil Warnock will miss the game after testing positive for COVID-19 during the week
Isaac Johnson
CONTRIBUTOR
Modified 17 Sep 2020, 16:33 IST
Preview
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This is set to be a tasty encounter as Neil Warnock's rough and tumble Middlesbrough welcome last season's Premier League relegation victims Bournemouth to the Riverside.

The Cherries got off to a winning start last weekend in Jason Tindall's first league game in charge, defeating Blackburn Rovers 3-2.

This weekend will be a different kind of test though as they come up against a Boro side that tasted defeat in the Championship's first game of the 2020-21 season against Watford, another club relegated from the top-flight last season.

Warnock - who will not attend the game after he tested positive for coronavirus on Thursday - came away from that game feeling that his side should have got a result and he will be determined to right the wrongs.

Bournemouth have lost some key players including their top goal scorer Callum Wilson, with the likes of Josh King and David Brooks also linked with moves away from the Vitality Stadium. This one won't be an easy one to call.


Middlesbrough vs Bournemouth Head-to-Head

Middlesbrough have only won once in its last four meetings with Bournemouth and have not registered a win against them in the Championship since its rebranding in the 2004-05 season (they did beat them once in the Premier League in October 2016).

However, Middlesbrough do have the better share of the wins, coming out victorious in seven of the 18 fixtures against Bournemouth, who have won just four.

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The last time these teams met in the Championship, Bournemouth came away 3-0 winners in March 2015.


Middlesbrough vs Bournemouth Team News

Marcus Bettinelli is due to start his second Championship game of the season after signing 24 hours before Middlesbrough's season-opener while Sam Morsy could be handed his Forest league debut.

Injured: None

Doubtful: None

Suspended: None

Asmir Begovic returned from his dead leg to take part in an enthralling League Cup penalty shoot-out win against Crystal Palace on Tuesday night and he could make the stating XI this Saturday.

Meanwhile, Diego Rico missed the visitors' midweek League Cup tie but may make the squad on Saturday.

Many of last weekend's starting XI versus Blackburn sat out the League Cup game and are poised to return to the field this Saturday.

Josh King remains a doubt after picking up a knock on international duty, as does Adam Smith after failing a fitness test before their League Cup game.

Injured: None

Doubtful: Josh King, Diego Rico, Adam Smith

Suspended: None


Middlesbrough vs Bournemouth Predicted XI

Middlesbrough predicted XI (3-5-2): Marcus Bettinelli, Anfernee Dijksteel, Grant Hall, Paddy McNair, Djed Spence, Sam Morsy, George Saville, Marcus Tavernier, Marvin Johnson, Ashley Fletcher, Britt Assombalonga

Bournemouth predicted XI (5-4-1): Asmir Begovic, Jack Stacey, Chris Mepham, Steve Cook, Lloyd Kelly, Adam Smith, Junior Stanislas, Lewis Cook, Jefferson Lerma, Arnaut Groeneveld, Dominic Solanke


Middlesbrough vs Bournemouth Prediction

Anyone who knows Neil Warnock knows how much of a master of the Championship he is and Boro fans will be hopeful that he can emulate his previous successes. Games like these are the tell-tale signs of what kind of campaign the hosts could be in for.

Bournemouth undoubtedly have quality within their own ranks, despite numerous summer exits.

Both defences could have their hands full with some quality attacking prowess on both sides, but Bournemouth could edge this encounter away from home.

Prediction: Middlesbrough 1-2 Bournemouth

Published 17 Sep 2020, 16:33 IST
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