Wolverhampton Wanderers manager Gary O’Neil will face off against his old team, Bournemouth.
Wolves will start the weekend in 14th place. The Old Gold went unbeaten in their last three Premier League matches. One of those three matches saw Wolves defeat Manchester City at home.
O’Neil’s team has played well from the start of the season, but it is only in the last few weeks that Wolves have picked up consistent points.
There is a sense that Wolves are starting to get their act together to move away from the bottom of the table.
The same cannot be said for Bournemouth. The Cherries are one of just two Premier League teams without a win going into round No. 9.
Manager Andoni Iraola, the man who replaced O’Neil at Bournemouth, was supposed to install a difficult-to-defeat attacking system into the team. Instead, Bournemouth have struggled to find the back of the net.
Bournemouth scored the fewest goals in the Premier League after eight matches (five). The Cherries conceded 18 goals, the third most of any team.
Iraola watched his team lose their last three league matches. The low point was a round No. 8 loss to Everton at Goodison Park by a score of 3-0.
Last season, Bournemouth took four points from six points on offer against Wolverhampton in the league.
The big difference between these teams is the coach who led Bournemouth to four points from six is now in charge of Wolves.
There is some hope for Bournemouth. They picked up two draws from four matches at Dean Court. Wolves, on the other hand, picked up four points from four away fixtures.
Iraola could be without up to seven players for the match. Midfielder Tyler Adams, signed in the summer, is out of action and likely to need surgery on his hamstring.
Ryan Fredericks, Lloyd Kelly, Chris Mepham, Alex Scott, and Emiliano Marcondes are all expected to miss the match. Midfielder Philip Billing is in a race to return to the starting XI following a knock.
O’Neil won’t have midfielder Mario Lemina due to a suspension.
However, he will have Jean-Ricner Bellgarde back following a suspension of his own. Hugo Bueno could also return following the international break following an injury.
Wolves striker Hwang Hee-Chan is in fantastic form with five goals in Premier League matches. He scored a goal in each of his last two matches.
Wolverhampton Wanderers’ good form should continue against Bournemouth, with the teams drawing 1-1 at Dean Court. The draw could keep Iraola in the job at Dean Court a little longer.