With Tottenham not in action until Monday, the Premier League champions can go top of the table. We look ahead to Saturday’s game at the Etihad Stadium with our Manchester City vs Bournemouth prediction and preview.
Manchester City vs Bournemouth: The Quick Hits
- Manchester City are overwhelming favourites to defeat Bournemouth, with the Opta supercomputer unsurprisingly predicting them to win (84.6% chance).
- Bournemouth haven’t won any of their 18 all-time league meetings with Man City, the most one club has faced another without winning in English Football League history.
- Erling Haaland has scored 47 goals in just 45 Premier League appearances for City, two more than Bournemouth have netted in 48 top-flight games since the start of last season (45).
Andoni Iraola finally had three points to celebrate last week as Bournemouth earned their first victory of the Premier League season against Burnley, leaving Sheffield United as the division’s only winless side. Iraola’s next task is to build on that triumph, but there is no tougher assignment than Saturday’s trip to the Etihad Stadium, where the Cherries will face a Manchester City side buoyed by their win in the Manchester derby last week.
Indeed, Bournemouth have never beaten City in the teams’ 18 all-time league meetings, drawing twice and suffering 16 defeats. That is the most games one club has played against another without ever tasting victory in English Football League history.
City have also won their last 21 matches at the Etihad across all competitions after beating Brighton 2-1 in their last home game, setting a new record for consecutive home victories by a Premier League club.
Though Bournemouth face a gargantuan task on Saturday, Iraola can at least approach the match knowing it is unlikely to decide his future. His position appeared to be under serious threat this time last week, but goals from Antoine Semenyo and Philip Billing handed Bournemouth a 2-1 win in their six-pointer against Burnley, easing the pressure on the Basque coach. The Cherries were beaten 2-1 in the EFL Cup on Wednesday as they hosted Liverpool on a windy night on the south coast, but Iraola said he was still pleased with his team’s performance.
City, meanwhile, have had five days to prepare for Saturday’s game, having suffered an early EFL Cup elimination against Newcastle United in the previous round. Pep Guardiola’s side are looking to build on what was arguably their best performance of the season, having stormed to a 3-0 win over rivals Manchester United at Old Trafford last Sunday.
Erling Haaland grabbed the headlines again, scoring twice before teeing up Phil Foden for City’s third goal, and the Norwegian might be eyeing another piece of Premier League history on Saturday. Haaland has scored 47 goals in just 45 Premier League appearances for City, two more than Bournemouth have managed in 48 top-flight games since the start of last season (45).
Haaland seems destined to obliterate Andy Cole’s record for the fewest games needed to reach 50 goals in the competition, with the former Newcastle and Man Utd striker reaching his half-century in 65 appearances. Haaland certainly has time on his side as far as that record is concerned, but with him already having scored five Premier League hat-tricks, few would be surprised if it was broken this week.
City’s derby win also featured majestic performances from the likes of Rodri, John Stones and Bernardo Silva, with United chasing shadows for much of the second half. City are unbeaten in their last 24 league games when Rodri has made an appearance (22 wins, two draws), winning all eight of their matches when the Spaniard has featured this term, and losing at Wolves and Arsenal when he was suspended.
With City hosting Young Boys in their next UEFA Champions League fixture on Tuesday and coasting in Group G, Guardiola may keep rotation to a minimum for Saturday’s match. Kevin De Bruyne is City’s only long-term absentee, while Manuel Akanji is eligible after serving a one-match ban following his red card against Brighton. Exciting winger Jérémy Doku could return to the champions’ starting lineup, though Jack Grealish produced a lively performance on the left flank last time out.
Bournemouth are expecting an ankle injury to sideline first-choice goalkeeper Neto until after the next international break, so Ionuț Radu should start between the sticks, as he did against Burnley and Liverpool. Defender Marcos Senesi is available after missing the Burnley win, but Lewis Cook is still suspended following his sending off against Wolves and Tyler Adams is a long-term absentee.
Manchester City vs Bournemouth Head-to-Head
City have won all 12 of their Premier League meetings with Bournemouth, giving them the best 100 per cent record of any club against a specific opponent in English top-flight history.
Guardiola’s men were utterly dominant against Bournemouth last season, hitting eight goals across the teams’ two Premier League meetings.
Scott Parker was in the Bournemouth dugout as they were beaten 4-0 on their most recent trip to the Etihad last August, while Gary O’Neil was in charge of the Cherries when City won 4-1 at the Vitality Stadium in February. Haaland, Foden and Julián Álvarez all scored in that game, while Bournemouth defender Chris Mepham put through his own net.
Bournemouth begin Matchday 11 sitting 17th in the Premier League table, one point clear of the relegation zone.
City are unbeaten in their last 53 home Premier League games against teams starting the day inside the bottom four, winning 48 and drawing five since suffering a 2-1 defeat against bottom-of-the-league Tottenham in November 2008.
City have certainly made their home a fortress lately, winning all 14 of their Premier League matches at the Etihad in 2023.
They have only enjoyed one longer winning run at home in Premier League history, winning 20 consecutive matches under Roberto Mancini between March 2011 and March 2012.
Bournemouth, meanwhile, have lost five of their last six away league games, the exception being a 2-2 draw at Brentford in September.
The Cherries had won their previous three on the road prior to this run, with O’Neil overseeing victories against Leicester City, Spurs and Southampton in April.
Saturday’s visitors are looking to win successive Premier League games for the first time this season, with their last set of back-to-back victories in the competition arriving in April, against since-relegated duo Southampton and Leeds United.
Opta Power Rankings
The Opta Power Rankings are a global team ranking system that assigns an ability score to over 13,000 domestic football teams on a scale between zero and 100, where zero is the worst-ranked team in the world and 100 is the best team in the world.
Ahead of kick-off this weekend, here is the Opta Power Ranking for both sides.
Manchester City vs Bournemouth Prediction
With Arsenal facing Newcastle in Saturday’s late kick-off and Tottenham hosting Chelsea on Monday, City know a victory will take them top of the Premier League table, at least temporarily.
They are strong favourites to overcome Bournemouth, winning 84.6% of the 10,000 pre-match simulations conducted by the Opta supercomputer. The visitors are given just a 4.1% chance of a shock victory, with the likelihood of a draw standing at 11.3%.
City’s dominant derby performance boosted their hopes of winning an unprecedented fourth consecutive English top-flight title. In the supercomputer’s season predictions, City retain their trophy in 80% of scenarios.
Despite their win over Burnley, Bournemouth are relegated in 54.5% of projections, with only Sheffield United (89.4%), Luton Town (72.8%) and the Clarets (62.6%) seen as being in greater danger of the drop.