AFC Bournemouth will be hosting Luton Town at the Vitality Stadium on Matchday 9 of the 2021/22 EFL Championship season. The Cherries are one of the two undefeated teams in the Championship after eight games and sit top of the standings for the division. They have won five and drawn three games, scoring 14 goals and conceding just six. Luton Town on the other hand sit 12th with 10 points from their opening eight games. The Hatters have had a decent record away from home, winning and losing one game each, while drawing the other two.
The Cherries have not recorded the best of attacking stats in the league, but they have been able to avoid defeat in all eight games and won five to stay at the top of the Championship. They only have the 12th highest xG in the division with just 10.50 but have highly overachieved it by scoring a total of 14 goals. Luton Town might be down in 12th, but they have the third-highest xG in the division with 13.78, though they have scored 12 and conceded 14 goals in their first eight games.
Both teams have had an almost equal number of shots in their first eight games with the Cherries having 83(12th highest) and Luton Town 84(10th highest). But in terms of shots on target, Bournemouth have recorded a total of 39 shots or target compared to Luton’s 30. This accuracy and being clinical in front of goal has been one of the major reasons for the Cherries’ success so far this season.
League leaders Bournemouth have not been interested in putting crosses into the box, as their tactics have been to create opportunities with their effective passing and creativity. They have the fourth-least successful crosses in the division with just 23 compared to The Hatters’ 39, which is the 10th highest.
Bournemouth have been impressive in passing the ball around, and have recorded the fifth-highest successful passes in the division with 2901 passes. This shows that they have believed in a philosophy of passing the ball out from the back and keeping a lot of possession in most games. Luton on the other hand have just 1667 passes, which is the fourth-lowest in the entire Championship.
Even if Luton have a very low number of total passes, they have had the eighth-highest passes into the final third with 452, which shows that they have been much direct in their attacking approach, clearing the ball from the back and building up play in the opposition half. Bournemouth might have the third-lowest passes into the final third with just 372, they have had the ninth highest passes into the opposition with 71, which is more than Luton Town’s 57. This shows that Bournemouth’s attack has been much more effective as they have spent time in the buildup and waited for the right opportunities to enter the attacking third.
Dominic Solanke has been the best player for the Cherries, and is their top scorer in the league with five goals in the first eight games. The above viz is his shot map, which shows that he has taken almost all of his shots from inside the box, scoring a proper striker’s goals. He has been clinical in front of the goal and has been the major reason behind their success. Scott Parker has been successful so far in avoiding defeat and will hope to continue this unbeaten run for a few more weeks. Nathan Jones will hope that his Luton town side defends better and gets something out of the visit to the Vitality Stadium.
AFC Bournemouth’s Predicted Starting XI (4-3-3): GK: Mark Travers; RB: Adam Smith, CBs: Gary Cahill, Lloyd Kelly, LB: Jordan Zemura; CDM: Philip Billing, RM: Jefferson Lerma, LM: Ryan Christie; RW: David Brooks, ST: Dominic Solanke, LW: Jaidon Anthony
(Injuries: Junior Stanislas and Lewis Cook)
Luton Town’s Predicted Starting XI(3-5-2): GK: Simon Sluga; CBs: Tom Lockyer, Reece Burke, Kal Naismith; RWB: James Bree, CDMs: Luke Berry, Henri Lansbury, CAM: Mpanzu, LWB: GabrielOsho; RCF: Elijah Adebayo, LCF: Harry Cornick
(Injuries: Allan Campbell)