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Match Preview: Bournemouth v Watford

By Liam Buckler

Eddie Howe has called on his players to improve their poor defensive record ahead of the visit of Watford this weekend.

Bournemouth have conceded nine goals in the last three games, with the Cherries boss fully aware of the demand to improve their statistics.

“It doesn’t sound great that statistic and it’s not something we’ll hide from,” he said.

“It’s a strange one, the lads have produced some heroic defensive performances at times. But the goals have come from nothing, when we’ve been in control.

“None more so than last week when we dominated at Hull and the first time they get really near our box, we concede.

“The only thing you can do is to work harder on all aspects of the team, that’s a very obvious statement but the whole team has to function together.

Howe has admitted his team have not been up to same performance level since they last played Arsenal.

“We’ve not been good to watch since the Arsenal game and this weekend is a good chance for us to put things right.”

Watford manager Walter Mazzarri is coming to the south coast under pressure with the Hornets having failing to win a league match in their last six Premier League outings. “They have some very talented players and tactically are very good. They’ve reverted to a back three which served them well at times last season and they’re very well managed.”

Team news:

Bournemouth defender Marc Wilson is the only injury doubt ahead of the visit of Watford this weekend. Simon Francis will serve the final of his three match ban after his sending off against Arsenal. Max Gradel remains on Africa Cup of Nations duty.

Watford welcome back Daryl Jammat, who has been out of action since Boxing day, and new loan signing Tom Cleverly is in line to make his first start for the club.

Nordin Amrabat and Adlene Guedioura are away on Africa Cup of Nations duty.

The game at the Vitality kicks off at 3pm tomorrow.