Freshly promoted Bournemouth begin their first Premier League season since 2020 with the visit of Aston Villa on Saturday afternoon.
Bournemouth’s first ever Premier League match in 2015 was also at home to Villa. Steven Gerrard was still playing back then but is poised to pit his wits against his former England teammate Scott Parker from the dugout ahead of his first full season at the helm of the Midlands giants.
Here’s everything you need to know about Saturday’s match.
Channel: BT Sport Score (Studio Updates Only)
Channel: BBC Final Score (Studio Updates Only)
Broadcast Time: 15:00 (BST)
Streaming Service: Peacock Premium
Broadcast Time EST: 10:00
Broadcast Time PST: 07:00
Streaming Service: fuboTV Canada
Broadcast Time (EST): 10:00
Where can you watch Bournemouth vs Aston Villa Highlights?
Channel: Sky Sports Football
Channel: BBC Match of the Day
Stream: Sky Football YouTube channel
H2H Results (Last Five Games)
Bournemouth: 3 Wins
Aston Villa: 2 Wins
Draws: 0 Draws
Current Form (Last Five Games)
Aston Villa: WWWDW
Bournemouth team news
Bournemouth haven’t been the busiest club in the off-season and their first two signings of the summer, Joe Rothwell and Ryan Fredericks, are expected to miss out on the opening weekend with niggling concerns they picked up at the end of July.
Parker stressed the need to “tread carefully” with David Brooks after the winger revealed he was cancer-free in May.
The frustrated Bournemouth boss has expressed a desire to line-up with a back-three for the upcoming season yet has just three senior centre-backs to choose from given Bournemouth’s inactivity in the market.
Bournemouth Starting 11: Travers; Mepham, Hill, Kelly; Smith, Cook, Lerma, Tavernier; Christie, Solanke, Anthony
Bench: Dennis, Zemura, Stacey, Billing, Stanislas, Moore, Bevan
Aston Villa team news vs Bournemouth
Gerrard has the luxury of entering the new season with a squad largely unblemished by injuries. Kortney Hause isn’t set to return until the end of August at the earliest after undergoing a minor operation on his knee in July.
However, the travelling Villa fans may be treated to the professional debut of summer arrival Diego Carlos at centre-back.
Aston Villa Starting 11: Martinez; Cash, Konsa, Carlos, Digne; McGinn, Kamara, Ramsey; Bailey, Watkins, Coutinho
Bench: Olsen, Young, Iroegbunam, Augustinsson, Luiz, Ings, Archer
A week before the new Premier League season, Parker didn’t exactly fill Bournemouth’s support with an overwhelming glut of optimism when he admitted his side are “way short of where we need to be”.
While Parker is still waiting (hoping, praying) for reinforcements, Gerrard could revel in the “front foot” approach of his recruitment department which brought Villa’s new arrivals to the Midlands early in the window.
Each side’s transfer strategies won’t be the only factors ahead of this match, but Villa’s proactive work only serves to strengthen a mid-table Premier League side who are favourites against a team weakened compared to its Championship success.
Prediction: Bournemouth 1-2 Aston Villa