Bournemouth v Man Utd preview: Jose Mourinho to ring the changes
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Last Updated: 18/04/18 7:45pm
Jose Mourinho intends to make changes when Manchester United travel to Bournemouth in the Premier League on Wednesday.
United handed the Premier League title to rivals City with defeat to West Brom, and Mourinho said in his pre-match press conference that other players will be given a chance to prove themselves against Bournemouth on Wednesday ahead of the FA Cup semi-final with Tottenham on Saturday at Wembley.
"If I play someone against Bournemouth and he is phenomenal, he plays the semi-final," said Mourinho.
"The word is not rotation. This is an opportunity for some people to play and to try to get a place in the team. Some of the guys who played [against West Brom], they don't have a place in that team."
Eddie Howe's Bournemouth lost 3-0 at Liverpool on Saturday, but sit 10 points clear of the drop zone with four games remaining.
"You can see down the bottom of the league how tight it is, with everyone scrambling to get above the 40-point mark," said Howe.
"One or two disappointing results and you can tumble down the league; from our perspective we've been consistent in our league position for a while, due to our form and being difficult to beat, we've been picking up points all the way through, and we don't want to lose that position."
Howe is without Junior Stanislas and Adam Smith, both owing to knee injuries, but otherwise has a fit squad to choose from.
Marcos Rojo, Phil Jones and Scott McTominay were unused substitutes in Sunday's loss to West Brom and will hope to be involved, so too the likes of Marouane Fellaini, Matteo Darmian and Luke Shaw after being absent from Sunday's squad.
Back-up goalkeeper Sergio Romero has been out since sustaining a back injury on international duty with Argentina, while Daley Blind is back in training and pushing for a return.
- After winning their first Premier League meeting with Man Utd (2-1 in December 2015), the Cherries have lost three and drawn one of the subsequent four.
- United have only failed to score in one of their previous 13 meetings with Bournemouth in all competitions, losing 2-0 in an FA Cup tie in January 1984, when the Cherries were managed by Harry Redknapp.
- Indeed, both teams have found the net in four of the previous five Premier League meetings, with Man Utd's 1-0 win in December the only time a team has kept a clean sheet.
- Eleven of Bournemouth's last 12 home goals in the Premier League have come in the second half of games.
I can see Man Utd winning here, but I've never seen anything like their performance on Sunday against West Brom at the highest level. It was like 'We'll turn up and wipe the floor of these'.
It was too slow. It's not been good. They've been terrible to watch, and they've got enough attacking flair. It's not like you're sat there thinking: "Who can they bring on here?"
Bournemouth are safe, and we underestimate them. Their ground has 12,000! We take it for granted when they stay up, and I don't think they get the credit they deserve.
PAUL PREDICTS: 1-2 (7/1 with Sky Bet)