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Bournemouth v West Brom Tips & Predictions: Little to separate two of the favourites for promotion in Championship curtain-raiser

Bournemouth v West Brom Tips & Predictions: Scott Parker takes charge of his first league game as Bournemouth manager.
Bournemouth v West Brom Tips & Predictions: Scott Parker takes charge of his first league game as Bournemouth manager.

The 2021/22 season starts with a bang on Friday evening, as two of the Championship’s favourites for promotion lock horns on the south coast. 

West Brom travel to Bournemouth looking to get their campaign off to the best possible start with a win having dropped down from the Premier League at the end of last season. 

The Baggies are second-favourites in the Championship winner odds at 13/2 while Bournemouth begin the campaign as fourth-favourites for the title at 9/1 (10/3 just for promotion). 

These are two of the strongest squads in the whole division and both are predicted to finish the campaign in and around the automatic promotion/play-off positions, so getting off to a strong start will be pivotal to both of their chances of achieving such a feat. 

Team news - Bournemouth:

  • Lewis Cook is ruled out with a long-term injury
  • Arnaut Danjuma and Steve Cook are also both out with knocks
  • Chris Mepham is suspended from a red card carried over from last season’s play-off semi-final against Brentford

Team news - West Brom:

  • Robert Snodgrass remains sidelined with a back injury
  • Mattheus Pereira will not feature as he looks to force a move away from the club

Bournemouth v West Brom Tips

Today's football tips

Full-time draw
9/4
Odds correct as of 2021-08-05 15:10 Odds subject to change.

With little to separate these two sides I am plucking for a full-time draw for my first bet. As previously alluded to, these will be two of the strongest teams in the league this season and both have a huge amount of quality pulsating through their starting XIs - many of which are still of Premier League standard. 

With this in mind, I can see them cancelling each other out throughout the 90 with chances coming at a bit of a premium. I do see both teams getting on the scoresheet, though backing either to clinch the spoils seems like an almost impossible task with both enjoying solid pre-seasons. 

Bournemouth thrashed MK Dons in the first round of the League Cup on Saturday while West Brom won three of their four pre-season games - drawing the other - without conceding a solitary goal. 

While these types of games are not to be used as a gauge of a club’s true abilities due to a number of different factors, there are certainly positive signs from both camps heading into this curtain-raiser at the Vitality, therefore a draw seems a pretty solid shout.

Premier League Odds
Jefferson Lerma to be booked
15/8
Odds correct as of 2021-08-05 15:10 Odds subject to change.

Jefferson Lerma’s name is never too far away from the referee’s notepad. Since joining Bournemouth in 2017 the Colombian has been carded 39 times in 113 appearances for the Cherries, and last season saw yellow on 11 separate occasions - second only to Michael Ihiekwe (12) and Nathaniel Chalobah (12) in the whole division. 

He is a tough-tackling midfielder who will be fired up and ready to go after months of not playing a competitive league fixture. Throw his opposing midfielder, the equally-robust Jake Livermoore, into the mix and you’ve got the ingredients for a really fiery battle which could result in plenty of cards. Let’s hope Lerma is the recipient of one of them. 

David Brooks to score anytime & Jake Livermoore to be booked
11/1
Odds correct as of 2021-08-05 15:10 Odds subject to change.

David Brooks didn’t score as many goals as he would have hoped last season, finishing the campaign with a five-goal haul from 32 outings in the Championship. 

There is, however, a player of real quality in the Welshman and if he hits the ground running this term he has the potential to enjoy a really successful campaign under Scott Parker. 

Brooks has impressed in pre-season and scored a brace in the 5-0 League Cup win over MK Dons at the weekend, so will enter this clash brimming with confidence in the hope that he can open his league account at the first time of asking. 

I’ll be doubling this bet up with Baggies midfield general Jake Livermoore to be carded. The former England international managed to elude the ref’s notebook quite well last term, picking up just two bookings in 18 Premier League appearances. 

He did average the most fouls per game, though, with 1.7 which shows that he can often mistime his challenges. Lining up directly against Jefferson Lerma for this one, expect the battle in the heart of midfield to be a feisty one. 

Good luck to anyone following these tips, and please remember to gamble responsibly. 

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