Eddie Howe: I don't want this creative genius to play for Liverpool on Sunday
By Matt Farr
Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe has revealed that he does not want creative genius Adam Lallana to play for Liverpool on Sunday.
The two sides go head-to-head at Dean Court on Sunday, and Howe has raised the pressure on his opponents by tipping them to win the league this season.
Jurgen Klopp’s side are currently second in the league, trailing leaders Chelsea by a solitary point. They are also the league’s highest goalscorers with 32 points, and are unbeaten in all competitions since their 2-0 defeat to Burnley on August 20.
Howe praised the Reds’ playing style and Klopp’s hard work, but insisted that his Bournemouth side would up to the challenge.
“For me Liverpool are genuine title contenders. They’ve shown this season what a good side they are and we’ll have to be at our best,” he said.
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Howe picked out former Bournemouth academy player Lallana was a dangerman and is hopeful he does not make his comeback at the weekend after a three-match absence with a groin injury.
“It’s a clear style. Mixture of experience and young players. I was aware of Adam Lallana way back, you could see he was very creative and technically gifted. We’d prefer not to see him on Sunday.
“We don’t look at the stats and worry. They’re a good team, but we’re going into the game aiming to win it. We have no fear, we’re at home and we’re always competitive here.
“We’ll give it a really good go and there’s no reason why we can’t get a result,” he finished.
Bournemouth have won just once in their last five fixtures, and are 12th in the league after 13 games. They gave a good display in their last game against Arsenal, but still lost 3-1.
They will be boosted by the return of on loan star Jack Wilshere – who as ineligible against his parent club – while they will also take confidence from the absence of Philippe Coutinho for their opponents.
Coutinho is out until the near year with an ankle injury.
Liverpool, meanwhile, will be a little tired after their midweek EFL cup clash with Leeds.
In other Liverpool news, here is Sky Sports pundit Paul Merson’s prediction for the tie.