AFC Bournemouth vs Nottingham Forest Preview & Betting Tips: Sweet Cherries?

Kieffer MooreThe Cherries will look to put an end to their winless run on Saturday afternoon (3pm), but to do so they’ll have to get the better of the Tricky Trees, who’ve started to turn things around. It’s Bournemouth against Nottingham Forest at Vitality Stadium in the Premier League. Who comes out on top? This AFCB vs NFFC preview with betting tips aims to find out.

Things got worse for Bournemouth last weekend. Prior to their game against Brentford, the Cherries had lost five on the bounce in all competitions, losing each of their last three in the Premier League. It is now four league defeats in a row following their 2-0 failure in West London.

What is perhaps more concerning for the boys in red and black is the fact that they have now gone four Premier League games without scoring a goal. Fortunately, it is only one home game without notching, so they may fancy themselves to get some joy against another of the teams that came up from the Championship at the end of last season.

As far as Saturday’s visitors are concerned, 2023 has started with a bang. They fought back to earn a point against Chelsea on New Year’s Day, and as far as the Premier League is concerned, they have not looked back since, first beating Southampton on the road, before getting the better of Leicester at home last time out.

Steve Cooper’s men have now lost only two of their last seven in all competitions, which is not bad for a newly promoted team that not long ago was being hotly tipped to go back down. They are now in a lofty 13th position, five points clear of the dreaded bottom three.

Not easy to beat at Vitality Stadium

Yes, the hosts come into this game in poor form, which likely means that confidence is in short supply. Though they may take confidence from the fact that they have been relatively difficult to beat at home this term, even though they currently possess the fourth worst home record in the division.

The Cherries have found it hard to win games, even at home, make no mistake about that, but they certainly don’t take many severe beatings. Only two teams have gone to Vitality Stadium and won by more than a single goal, while Gary O’Neil’s men have conceded more than once in just three out of nine.

In fact, if we look at it in terms of goals conceded, then they rank as the sixth best Premier League team at home. Sure, flip it and view it in terms of goals scored and they are the sixth worst, but at least they can keep themselves in games.

Visitors on the up

It is hard to criticise what Nottingham Forest have produced since the turn of the year, that is for sure. They are unbeaten in three, two of which they have won, while they have conceded just a single goal. Even when they last played on the road, they kept things tight, beating strugglers Southampton by a goal to nil. Their efforts on that occasion suggest that they could easily get a result against the Cherries.

The real worry for Steve Cooper’s men is whether they really start to hurt teams on the road, which is where they have fallen down most this season. Prior to their single goal at St Mary’s, they had failed to find the net in six straight away games in the Premier League. Somewhat alarmingly, Saturday’s visitors have scored just two away goals all term, which makes them the worst team in the league in terms of travelling goals scored. That is the problem.

Cherries on top

In recent times, this is very much a fixture that Saturday’s hosts have dominated. When the pair met earlier in the campaign, AFC Bournemouth won by three goals to two, while they have now won each of their last three against Nottingham Forest, who haven’t registered a competitive win against the Cherries since 2015.

In that game earlier in the season, Forest surged into a two-goal lead before the break, but they still walked away empty handed after allowing the Bournemouth players to score three second half goals without reply. In truth, it was a relatively even contest, one where neither team covered themselves in defensive glory. The neutrals will probably be hoping for something similar on Saturday.

Low-scoring affair to take place?

Five goals were scored in the reverse fixture, but we should not let that cloud our judgement. This preview is talking about two teams that struggle offensively, there’s no two ways about it.

Bournemouth are one of the worst Premier League teams when it comes to goals scored at home, averaging only one goal per game at Vitality Stadium. The visitors are easily the worst EPL team when it comes to goals scored on the road, averaging a dismal 0.22 goals per game.

At the same time, pointing towards a lack of goals in this fixture, Bournemouth have a good defensive record at home, keeping a respectable four clean sheets, while Nottingham Forest have really started to tighten up of late. Throw in that both teams have scored in just two of the Cherries’ nine home games and going down the lack of goals route in the betting starts to appeal greatly.

We also should not forget that both teams lack an out-and-out goal getter. Kieffer Moore and Philip Billing are joint top scorers for the hosts, but neither are prolific with just four each, while neither have scored in the league since November. Brennan Johnson and Taiwo Awoniyi both have four for Forest, but again, given that they have made a combined total of 35 league appearances, neither is a regular goal scorer.

The ultimate catalyst for a ‘Both Teams to Score – NO’ bet is this: Bournemouth are the worst home team in terms of expected goals for, averaging 0.81 per game, while Forest are the second worst on the road when it comes to xG for, averaging only 0.8.

So for the betting tips verdict for our AFCB vs NFFC preview, is this sole selection against the UK betting sites:

  • Both Teams to Score – NO @ best odds of evens with BetVictor.