Millwall are in impressive form as they prepare to face Bournemouth at home in the FA Cup on Saturday (January 7) but the Premier League side should have enough firepower to see off their League One opponents.
The last time Millwall and Bournemouth met was as equals in the Championship in 2014. A little over two years later and there is an entire division between the two sides.
Following the 2-0 victory for the Cherries last time they visited The Den, Eddie Howe’s side have shot to the upper echelons of English football in impressive style. Meanwhile, Neil Harris’s men have found themselves wallowing in the League One mire and desperately trying to claw their way out.
Encouragingly for the Lions, over December they have put together an impressive run of form that now sees them within touching distance of the playoff positions. They are unbeaten in their last four league matches, having won three, and in that same timeframe have scored nine goals while conceding four.
Before their tie against Arsenal, Bournemouth found themselves in a highly respectable ninth position in the Premier League on 24 points. This is four points better off than they were at the same stage last year and highlights their ascendancy at the top of English football.
The Cherries have only failed to score in five matches in all competitions this season, and wherever they go goals tend to be on the agenda. Howe has a highly attacking philosophy but may choose to be more cautious in the FA Cup after his side’s unceremonious dumping from the EFL Cup at the hands of Preston North End back in September.
Harris will be mindful of the importance of the league, but knows that toppling a top flight side in the cup will serve to inspire his players to keep up the momentum. And with a week’s grace until either side plays a competitive match, expect both managers to set their respective teams up to win.
For all their attacking flair, the Cherries are often leaky in defence having conceded 31 goals in the league already this season. They have also allowed teams to fire off a whopping 168 goal attempts from within the box, indicating that the Lions may be able to breach them here as well.
Therefore, the wise money is on Bournemouth to win and Both Teams to Score at 11/4.
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