TEAM NEWS

Defender Marc Navarro is ruled out, joining Daryl Janmaat and Tom Cleverley on the sidelines. Gerard Deulofeu, Stefano Okaka, Miguel Britos and Sebastian Prodl have all returned to training after injury problems and could feature for Watford.

Bournemouth has no new injury concerns ahead of Saturday’s game. Fit-again winger Junior Stanislas has featured in the last two league games as a substitute and will hope to return to the starting line-up.

Left-back Charlie Daniels made his comeback from a knee problem by playing for the under-21 side on Tuesday, but this game may come too soon for him.

Watford vs Bournemouth

MOTD COMMENTATOR’S NOTES

@wilsonfooty: It’s sixth against seventh at Vicarage Road – not many would have predicted that before the season began. Watford’s lofty perch is the result of their best start to a top-flight campaign – the highlight of which was probably beating Spurs.

A draw at Fulham and a loss at Arsenal since then might have taken away some of their momentum, but they played well at the Emirates and arguably deserved better.

Bournemouth got themselves back on track by beating Crystal Palace after their 4-0 thumping at Burnley, and Eddie Howe’s side do have the occasional spectacular off-day. But they are – more often than not – a pleasure to watch.

VIEW FROM THE DUGOUT

Watford head coach Javi Gracia: “I think our feeling that we are doing well is shown in the stats as well. We feel we are doing a good job and it is not only about the results.

“We have put in good performances whether we are winning, losing or drawing. We need to try to improve the little details and we will get good results.”

Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe: “Watford look creative, they have a physical threat and players that can score goals.

“Watford have been playing very well. Yes, they lost at Arsenal but they performed well and created plenty of chances.”

LAWRO’S PREDICTION

This has been by far Bournemouth’s best start to a campaign since they were promoted to the Premier League in 2015. But if I am being critical, the Cherries probably give away too many chances, and that is why I am going for a Watford win.

Prediction: 2-1

MATCH FACTS

Head-to-head

  • Watford have lost just one of their last 14 games against Bournemouth in all competitions (W6, D7).
  • Five of the six Premier League meetings have ended as draws, with the exception the Hornets’ 2-0 win at the Vitality Stadium in August 2017.

Watford

  • This will be the 100th Premier League game at Vicarage Road.
  • The Hornets are one short of 50 Premier League wins and 200 goals in the division.
  • Watford won their first four Premier League games of the season but are without a victory in their last three (D1, L2).
  • They have allowed their opponents just 19 shots on target in this season’s Premier League – only Manchester City, with 14, have faced fewer efforts on goal.
  • Watford have not lost back-to-back Premier League home matches since May 2017, when they were beaten by Liverpool and then Manchester City.
  • Roberto Pereyra has scored six goals in his last eight Premier League appearances at Vicarage Road.

Bournemouth

  • The Cherries have 13 points after seven Premier League matches. Their previous highest tally at this stage of a top-flight season was eight, in 2016-17.
  • Victory would give them 16 points from eight games – last season it took them 16 matches to reach that mark.
  • Bournemouth have failed to keep a clean sheet in their last nine away league games, conceding 20 goals in total.
  • They have had 178 touches in the opposition penalty box in this season’s Premier League – a tally bettered only by the current top four.
  • The Cherries have been awarded four penalties this season, a joint-league high with Brighton prior to the weekend. They were only awarded three spot-kicks in total last term.

Source: BBC News