Sports Mole previews Wednesday’s Championship clash between Bournemouth and Birmingham City, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Meanwhile, the visitors will be aiming to pile more misery upon their hosts as they seek to end a three-game winless run.
It would be fair to assume that Scott Parker and his players will be wanting to quickly forget the FA Cup defeat to National League side Boreham Wood.
A Mark Ricketts strike proved to be enough to guide Boreham Wood to a huge cup upset at the Vitality Stadium on Sunday.
The Cherries do not have much time to dwell on that defeat though, as they return to league action on Wednesday looking to win at home for the first time this calendar year.
Bournemouth enter the midweek encounter in third position and sit just a point adrift of the automatic promotion places, with the advantage of two games in hand over second-placed Blackburn Rovers.
Having won just once in their last five home fixtures in all competitions, Parker will be fully aware that results at the Vitality Stadium need to improve if the Cherries are to move into the top two.
As for Birmingham, they may sit in 18th place, but there is a 13-point cushion between them and the drop zone.
Although a relegation battle is unlikely, Lee Bowyer will be concerned with the fact that his side have won once in their last 10 league games.
Following consecutive 2-2 draws, Birmingham ended up on the wrong side of a 2-1 scoreline on Friday when they welcomed Sheffield United to St Andrew’s.
Bowyer will be looking for a response from his side in midweek, although no victory in their last seven away games suggests that Birmingham face an uphill task on Wednesday.
Bournemouth Championship form:
Bournemouth form (all competitions):
Birmingham City Championship form:
A number of first-team regulars were rested on Sunday, with Parker set to make a number of changes from the side that started in the FA Cup fourth round against Boreham Wood.
After joining on loan from Nottingham Forest, Taylor has already endeared himself to the Blues faithful, having scored in both of his first two games for Birmingham.
Despite losing against Sheffield United, Bowyer could name an unchanged lineup for the trip to the South Coast on Wednesday.
Bournemouth possible starting lineup:
Woodman; Stacey, Phillips, Kelly, Zemura; Lerma, Billing, Cantwell; Christie, Anthony, Solanke
Birmingham City possible starting lineup:
Etheridge; Colin, Mengi, Roberts, Pedersen; Bacuna, Woods, Gardner, Hernandez; Hogan, Taylor
We say: Bournemouth 2-1 Birmingham City
Although Bournemouth’s form has dipped in recent weeks, we think that they should have enough quality in their squad to claim a victory over a Birmingham side that tend to struggle on the road.