Kick-off: 1800, 17/05/2021
Stadium: Vitality Stadium
TV: Sky Sports
Bournemouth’s bid to bounce straight back from last season’s relegation sees them host Brentford in the first leg of the Championship play-off semi-final.
Brentford’s third-place finish gives them the advantage of playing the second leg at home.
Punters will be expecting a cagey affair with neither team wanting to be out of the tie come Saturday’s second leg.
We reckon bother sides will settle for a draw here, so 12/5 for that outcome is our first Bournemouth vs Brentford prediction.
A look at Bournemouth’s betting odds
Bournemouth manager Jonathan Woodgate admits his side will be unfancied heading into the two-legged tie.
He said: “We’ll be the underdogs, it’s all on them as the favourites but we’ll give it our best shot.
“It’s massive for the football club. It’s massive for the players. It’s massive for myself.”
Woodgate replaced Jason Tindall at the helm in February with Bournemouth lying sixth – which is precisely where they finished.
He added: “When I came in, the objective was to finish in the play-offs and we’ve done that by seven points. If you’re winning seven games out of 10, then you are doing OK.”
The Cherries do not exactly arrive in the play-offs in peak form, though, having ended the regular season with defeats against Stoke, Wycombe and, notably, at home to Brentford.
Last Bournemouth line-up: Begovic, Carter-Vickers, Kelly, Cook, Smith, J Lerma, Billing, Brooks, Pearson, Groeneveld, Solanke
A look at Brentford’s betting odds
Brentford had automatic promotion in their grasp but fell away at the wrong time to find themselves in the play-offs again.
Last season, they lost out on automatic promotion on the final day of the season and were beaten by west London rivals Fulham in the final at Wembley.
They have regrouped admirably this term by shrugging off the sales of star men Ollie Watkins and Said Benrahma and unearthing another gem in Ivan Toney, the Championship’s top scorer with 31 goals.
Consecutive third-placed finishes are not to be sniffed at and manager Thomas Frank said: “I think it’s a statement, two seasons in a row coming third.
“Now we have more points than last year, we are top scorers in the league, so many things are in the right place.
“All four teams will have the ambition to get promoted but I’m pleased we are third.”
They limbered up for the play-offs with a comprehensive 3-1 win at Bristol City and with last season’s experience sure to spur them on, the Bees are 11/20 favourites to overcome Bournemouth over two legs.
If you fancy a repeat of Brentford’s 1-0 win at Bournemouth last month, 7/1 is on offer.
However, we prefer 23/4 for 1-1 on this occasion to finish off our Bournemouth vs Brentford betting tips.
Last Brentford line-up: Raya, Norgaard, Jansson, Pinnock, Fosu-Henry, Jensen, Roerslev, Canos, Janelt, Toney, Forss
BOURNEMOUTH 0-2 Stoke
Bristol City 1-3 BRENTFORD – Ivan Toney, Bryan Mbeumo, Sergi Canos
Head-to-head: Bournemouth 0-1 Brentford, Brentford 2-1 Bournemouth, Brentford 3-1 Bournemouth, Bournemouth 1-0 Brentford
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