Tranmere Rovers vs. Bournemouth match preview

Taylor back and ready to start against Bournemouth on Saturday
For the penultimate time this year, a Tranmere Rovers home league game will be played on a Saturday this weekend, with Rovers welcoming Bournemouth to Prenton Park for the second time in 2006.

Both sides will be looking to kick-start their season with wins, as both look to push back up towards the League One promotion spots.


Formed: 1890

Ground: The Fitness First Stadium

Manager: Kevin Bond

Nickname: The Cherries

Season Finish 2005/06: 17th (Coca-Cola League One)

Previous Meetings:

Supporters may be forgiven for not remembering either meeting between Tranmere and Bournemouth in League One last season.

On a Friday evening early in September 2005, Tranmere made the long trip Bournemouth, but only for a 0-0 draw.

The same happened later on in the season on January 7th, as the two sides drew 0-0, the first of four consecutive 0-0 draw's for Brian Little's side, and the first of what would turn out to be six draws out of seven, scoring just three goals.

Vital Stats:

Five out of the last seven meetings between the two sides have ended in draws

Bournemouth have failed to score in their last four journeys to Prenton Park

Tranmere have only beaten Bournemouth six times out of 19 in Birkenhead

Rovers have only scored nine goals in nine games on October 28th

The last season Tranmere played on October 28th, they reached The League Cup Final and F.A. Cup Quarter Final

The Form Book:

Tranmere last 6 home games: LDDWWW
Bournemouth last 6 away games: LDDDDL

It has been an indifferent start to the season for Bournemouth, after Sean O'Driscall left and The Cherries appointed former Newcastle United assistant-manager Kevin Bond as manager.

The Cherries are still to win an away game this season, but yet have only lost two away league games this season, losing 3-2 at Leyton Orient and 1-0 at Millwall, who are re-charged after they sacked manager Nigel Spackman.

Bournemouth's four consecutive draws, sandwiched by the two defeats, came against opposition who are tough to beat on their home patch.

They drew 2-2 with Huddersfield, whilst The Cherries also picked up a point where Rovers failed, drawing 0-0 with Bradford City.

A short journey (in comparison to most journeys the team will have to make this season) to Brighton brought a point with another 2-2 draw, whilst Bournemouth also drew 1-1 at Doncaster Rovers.

Before their 3-2 defeat to Leyton Orient, in their first away game of the campaign after a 3-0 home defeat to Chesterfield, Bournemouth drew 0-0 away with Yeovil.

At home, Bournemouth have only picked up 11 points from an available 24, which is the main reason as to why they currently find themselves in 20th place in League One.

Wins have been few and far between, as the south coast side have only defeated three sides this season, all in a row at Dean Court in the league, as Cheltenham Town (2-1), Oldham Athletic (3-2) and Crewe Alexandra (1-0) were beaten.

Tranmere's season has gone off the rails somewhat in the last month, as they have gone six league games without a win.

Perhaps most importantly, Ronnie Moore's men are three home league games without a win, with the Rovers only picking up two points from their last nine available against Nottingham Forest (0-0), Huddersfield Town (2-2) and Port Vale (2-1).

Before this, Rovers won their opening four home games, conceeding just one goal in the process.

First of all, Oldham were defeated 1-0, then Yeovil (2-1), Leyton Orient (3-0) and Bristol City (1-0) all followed them back down the Motorway empty handed.

Double Hit:

Few players have played for both Tranmere and Bournemouth in recent years, but one such player is former Aston Villa man Shaun Teale.

After beginning his career with Weymouth, Teale made a £50,000 transfer to Bournemouth in 1988. The defender went on to make 100 league appearences for The Cherries, scoring four goals, along with 16 cup appearences.

In July 1991, Teale moved to Villa for £300,000, where he went on to make over 150 appearences for the club over four years before becoming Tranmere's record signing in 1995 under John King, signing for £450,000 - still the most money Tranmere have paid for one player.

Whilst at Prenton Park, Teale made 62 appearences, of which 54 appearences were in the league. Shaun spent three years on Merseyside before being transfered to Motherwell after loan spells with Preston North End and Sing Tao.

Team News:

Tranmere have a number of injury worries ahead of Saturdays game. Calvin Zola and Kevin Ellison are both likely to miss the game, whilst Robbie Stockdale and Olly James will definately miss out.

However, Jason McAteer and John Mullin are both expected to be fit, whilst Gareth Taylor is almost a certainty to start following his fractured cheek-bone.

John Thompson, who arrived from Nottm Forest on a months loan deal on Wednesday is set to make his debut at right-back with both James and Stockdale injured.

Jones' Prediction: Tranmere 1-0 Bournemouth