Arsenal vs Bournemouth preview, team news, line-ups and predicted score

By on May 2, 2024

Declan Rice Arteta Arsenal

Arsenal will look to cement their position at the top of the Premier League table with a win over Bournemouth at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday lunchtime.

The Gunners maintained their outstanding form in 2024 with another impressive victory over arch rivals Tottenham last weekend. Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg headed into his own net in the 15th minute to give Arsenal an early lead before a superb break-away move saw Bukayo Saka slot home for 2-0. The visitors made it 3-0 before half-time when Kai Havertz headed home from a corner to put Arsenal in complete control at the break.

Saka almost made it 4-0 but his goal-bound effort was well saved by Vicario and it could have been a pivotal turning point in the game. As just a minute later David Raya’s poor pass gifted Cristian Romero a goal and Tottenham were back in the match. Hueng-min Son converted an 87th minute penalty to make it 2-3 after Declan Rice had fouled Ben Davies in the area.

With 10 minutes remaining including injury time, Arsenal were suddenly under immense pressure to hold on to their lead. Perhaps last season this team would have crumbled, but the Gunners stood firm to secure a vital 3-2 victory over Spurs and keep our title dreams alive.

Arsenal need a favour

Unfortunately, Man City were lucky to beat Nottingham Forest 2-0 on Sunday afternoon so they are still one point behind Arsenal with that crucial game in hand – which is away to Tottenham. Arsenal now must rely on their fierce rivals to get a positive result against City. It’s hardly the ideal situation as Tottenham would loath to help us win the title. But they are still pushing for the top four so hopefully they need a result to close the gap on Aston Villa.

However, Arsenal must remain focussed on their job and that’s winning their remaining three games, starting with Bournemouth on Saturday. We play first again this weekend so Arsenal can open-up a four point lead again and put the pressure on City ahead of their home game against Wolves later in the day.

Last seasons game with Bournemouth at the Emirates was one of the most thrilling games of the season as Reiss Nelson scored deep into stoppage time to secure a 3-2 comeback win that kept us on course to winning the title. Mikel Arteta will hope for another three points on Saturday but the Cherries aren’t going to make it easy for us.

The South Coast club come into the game in decent form having won five of their last eight Premier League games and they were excellent in a 3-0 win over Brighton last time out. Bournemouth can move up to eighth with a win, so this isn’t a game Arsenal can take lightly.

How to watch

The game will be broadcast live on TNT Sports, kicking off at 12:30pm on Saturday May 4th. Subscribers can watch the game live on their TV, or via the TNT Sports app on mobile or tablet devices.

Match going fans are desperate to watch Arsenal as they continue to push for the title so tickets are in high demand. However, fans can still buy Arsenal tickets online through trusted resellers such as Seatsnet.com if the official exchange has sold out.

Team news

Arsenal have virtually a fully fit squad to choose from and Jurrien Timber could make his long-awaited comeback this weekend. The Dutchman hasn’t played for the first team since the opening weekend of the season when he suffered a serious ACL injury. However, he’s been back in training in recent weeks and after two run outs for the U23s, Timber is now poised to return to the first team squad.

Arteta hasn’t reported any fresh injury concerns following the NLD win over Tottenham so Arsenal are in terrific shape heading into the decisive final three games of the season.

Bournemouth on the other hand have a number of injury concerns to deal with. Antoine Semenyo is facing a long spell out with a knee injury while Ryan Fredericks is also out with a calf problem.

Marcus Tavernier is also set to miss out with a thigh injury while Luis Sinisterra and Romain Faivre are also missing. Milos Kerkez is serving a three-game suspension while Tyler Adams is a doubt with a back injury. Illia Zabarnyi and Chris Mepham will both be assessed after suffering illness last week.

Likely line-ups

Arteta has named the same starting eleven for the last two games against Chelsea and Tottenham, so he may be tempted to do so again this weekend.

David Raya will keep his place despite his error against Spurs while Ben White, William Saliba and Gabriel Magalhaes will all start in defence. Takehiro Tomiyasu has taken the left-back spot in recent games but Oleksandr Zinchenko is pushing for a recall if Arteta feels this is a game that would suit the Ukrainian.

Thomas Partey has regained full fitness and has been excellent in his last two starts so he should keep his place ahead of Jorginho. Declan Rice has been outstanding in his first season at Arsenal and he’ll once again start in midfield on Saturday.

Martin Odegaard will captain the Gunners once again with Bukayo Saka keeping his place on the right wing. Kai Havertz has been in superb form and is keeping Gabriel Jesus out of the team right now so the German is likely to keep his place up front.

The big question could be who starts on the left wing. Leandro Trossard has started the last two games but Arteta may be tempted to recall Gabriel Martinelli to give him a chance to rediscover his best form.

Likely Arsenal XI: Raya, White, Saliba, Gabriel, Tomiyasu, Partey, Rice, Odegaard, Saka, Martinelli, Havertz

Likely Bournemouth XI: Travers, Smith, Senesi, Kelly, Ouattara, Aarons, Scott, Cook, Kluivert, Unal Solanke

Predicted score

Bournemouth can be a dangerous side and they showed last season that they have the potential to cause Arsenal problems if we aren’t fully focussed. Solanke is a real threat as well so we’ll have to keep things tight at the back.

However, Arsenal know they simply have to win this game if we want to stand a chance of beating City to the title. This is a great opportunity to extend our lead to four points and put the pressure on City ahead of their game with Wolves.

As long as Arsenal continue to play with the same energy, quality and focus that we’ve displayed throughout 2024, then we should secure another vital win on Saturday. Arsenal 3-1 Bournemouth