Bournemouth are hopeful of having striker Dominic Solanke available when they face Tottenham in their next Premier League clash at the Vitality Stadium, but will be without goalkeeper Neto.
Gary O’Neil’s men suffered a controversial 2-0 defeat at West Ham last time out, but remain four points clear of the relegation zone following a strong start under their interim boss.
The efforts of Neto and Solanke have been key for Bournemouth this season, and while the former will be replaced by Mark Travers between the sticks, O’Neil is likely to have the former Liverpool and Chelsea striker available after he suffered a knock at the London Stadium.
“Unfortunately, Neto will be out,” O’Neil said. “It won’t be short term, it’ll be fairly long term – it won’t be a week or two.
“Neto brought a calmness and helped us steady the ship when we had some tough results, but as I said then, I’m delighted to have them both and I have full faith in Mark Travers.
“Dominic Solanke is a lot better than expected, there’s good news and he’s recovered well. As a result of that, we’re hopeful of him playing at the weekend, but we’ll have to wait and see.”
Tottenham were the victims of a controversial VAR call in their 1-1 Champions League draw with Sporting CP on Wednesday, a result which saw Spurs fail to secure top spot in their group and left Antonio Conte seething.
Conte suggested his team were suffering the effects of poor officiating more than most as he fumed: “I think we are not so lucky with VAR and I think they create big damage.
“I would like to see if this type of decision would be taken with a top team, in an important game, I would like to see if VAR is so brave to take this decision.”
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Bournemouth – Mark Travers
Travers replaced the injured Neto in Bournemouth’s 2-0 defeat to West Ham last time out. Travers has conceded 25 goals in his eight Premier League appearances, an average of one every 27 minutes; the worst ratio of any of the 251 goalkeepers to play at least five Premier League games. He will need to improve his form to keep Spurs out.
Tottenham Hotspur – Harry Kane
Kane has more Premier League goals against Bournemouth (seven in eight appearances), than the Cherries have against Spurs in the competition overall (five in 10 games). Meanwhile, Kane’s first away hat-trick in the Premier League came at the Vitality stadium back in October 2015, a game Spurs went on to win 5-1.
KEY OPTA FACTS
– Bournemouth have lost seven of their last 10 Premier League matches against Tottenham Hotspur (W1 D2), with their one win coming in May 2019 against a Spurs side that had two players sent off.
– Bournemouth have failed to score in seven Premier League games this season, the joint most of any side (level with Wolves). They have also shipped 25 goals in their 12 games so far, only conceding more at this stage in one previous Football League season (29 in 1994-95 in the third tier).
– Tottenham have lost three of their last five Premier League games (W2), as many defeats as in their previous 23 combined. Following defeats against Manchester United and Newcastle United, they could lose three on the bounce for a second time under Antonio Conte (previously in January-February this year).
– Tottenham have had more fast breaks than any other Premier League side this season (18), with 15 shots resulting from these (three goals). The Lilywhites have a starting distance of 39.6 metres this term – highlighting their deep defensive block – with only three sides starting their open play sequences closer to their own goal on average in the top-flight this term.
– Tottenham boss Antonio Conte has lost just one of his 19 Premier League games against promoted sides (W15 D3), with that coming in his final league game as Chelsea manager in May 2018 (0-3 vs Newcastle United).