The King Power Stadium will witness a big relegation battle between Leicester City and Bournemouth at the foot of the table.

Leicester City must look deeply at their state of affairs and find a positive outlook towards the next many games, starting with the outing against Bournemouth. Brendan Rodgers got the sack on Sunday and ended his reign after more than four years in charge of the Foxes, during which he led them to an FA Cup win.

The Foxes come into this weekend hoping to avoid a fourth successive defeat at home. Managerless Leicester City will want to show character and make optimal use of their quality to steer clear of the relegation zone. They currently occupy the 19th spot, and a win could take them out of these spots, particularly if their rivals perform badly.

They played a flying Aston Villa side earlier this week at the King Power and kept the game in the balance until half-time. Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall’s red card around the 70th minute opened up the game for Unai Emery’s side, who got the eventual winner through Bertrand Traore late in the game. The Foxes face a pivotal clash here and must win to keep their slim hopes alive.

Bournemouth are facing a crisis after coming through a period where it seemed they had turned a corner. The Cherries have lost eight of their last nine league games away from home. But they might have some momentum coming to Leicester City.

Gary O’Neil must reflect on the outcomes of those many games and find a way to get the best of his squad. With the defeat to Aston Villa sandwiched between the wins over Liverpool and Fulham, the manager will feel confident about turning a corner.

The Cherries will aim at completing their first league double over Leicester City since the 1988/89 season. As a bonus, a win here could elevate their chances of survival and push them outside of the drop zone if their other relegation rivals perform poorly.

Team News & Tactics

Leicester City

Leicester City have a host of players absent for this crucial clash. James Justin, Ryan Bertrand and Youri Tielemans remain sidelined through injuries and will remain absent for the foreseeable future. Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall will serve a suspension for his red card against Aston Villa.

Leicester will likely call up Boubakary Soumare to replace Dewsbury-Hall in central midfield and play with Wilfred Ndidi. Harry Souttar and Wout Faes will take up the central defensive berths, with Victor Kristiansen and Timothy Castagne playing as full-backs. Daniel Iversen could start in goal ahead of Danny Ward.

Meanwhile, James Maddison will hope for an upturn in form at this crucial stage. He will feature in the No.10 role behind Kelechi Iheanacho, who will lead the line. Leicester do have Patson Daka as an alternative to the Nigerian striker. Brazilian Tete and Harvey Barnes will occupy the wide attacking roles.

Probable Lineup (4-2-3-1): Iversen; Castagne, Souttar, Faes, Kristiansen; Ndidi, Soumare; Tete, Maddison, Iheanacho


Junior Stanislas and Ryan Fredericks remain out of the contest through injuries. There are also doubts over Marcos Senesi’s involvement. The defender got taken off late against Brighton & Hove Albion, although the Cherries hope to involve him.

If not, then January signing Illya Zabarnyi will take his place in central defence alongside Jack Stephens. O’Neil will likely retain a back four, with Adam Smith and Lloyd Kelly preferred as full-backs.

Philip Billing and Jefferson Lerma will hold on to their central midfield berths, with Ryan Christie and Dango Ouattara occupying wide areas. Hamed Traore will play the role behind the central striker in what seems like a more defensive outlook to the game. Dominic Solanke will continue to lead the line for Bournemouth.

Probable Lineup (4-4-1-1): Neto; Smith, Stephens, Senesi, Kelly; Christie, Billing, Lerma, Ouattara; Traore; Solanke

Key Stats

  • Leicester City have lost six of their last seven matches in the Premier League.
  • Leicester have not lost in their last six home matches against Bournemouth in all competitions.
  • Bournemouth have lost eight of their last nine away games in the Premier League.
  • Bournemouth have lost the most away games in the Premier League this season.
  • Bournemouth have conceded the most goals (38) away from home in the Premier League.

Player to Watch

James Maddison

Embed from Getty Images

It is baffling that Leicester City are 19th on the table and have the luxury of players like Maddison and Harvey Barnes in their squad. Of course, the team are much more than these two stars, but Maddison certainly standout is their star performer.

Leicester desperately need inspiration from somewhere in their squad. Maddison needs to step up his game to help the team retain their Premier League status. A good performance against the Cherries could help build momentum for the England international. At the same time, he can attract attention from top clubs, with Liverpool and Tottenham already keen.


Leicester City 1-1 AFC Bournemouth

Both sides have high stakes, and conceding the first goal could prove harmful for whoever does it. These teams will likely focus more on shaping their defensive setup and ensuring they are not leaky. As a result, there is a huge chance for this clash to end in a draw.

Leicester City have superior quality but remain bereft of confidence after recent results. The same goes for Bournemouth, considering their dreadful form away from home. The Cherries have confidence and momentum after recent results. But their displays on the road point towards a share of spoils at the King Power.

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