Luton Town vs Bournemouth

Kenilworth Road is the venue as Luton Town’s ‘make or break’ Premier League sequence starts with a must-win home clash against Bournemouth.

Luton’s once promising-looking maiden Premier League campaign has descended into chaos after a 2-0 midweek loss at Arsenal condemned them to a tenth consecutive winless league game (D3, L7), plunging them deeper into the drop zone. With 17th-placed Nottingham Forest three points away ahead of the kick-off, Rob Edwards’ men must arrest a five-game winless home run in all competitions (D1, L4) to give themselves a fighting chance. Edwards’ first assignment is to stop an alarming defensive leaking that has seen Luton concede a whopping 15 goals during that five-game stretch. The Hatters’ porous backline let them down in March’s reverse fixture as they wasted a 3-0 lead to lose 4-3 at the Vitality Stadium, which forms part of their ominous 11-game streak without a clean sheet.

On the other hand, high-flying Bournemouth squeezed past Crystal Palace 1-0 in midweek Premier League action to take their undefeated league run to five matches (W4, D1), creating a healthy 19-point buffer on the bottom three. After overseeing a three-game winless league streak, manager Andoni Iraola can start thinking about beating the Cherries’ best-ever top-flight finish of ninth. But finding a foothold in their away games is a prerequisite to achieving that goal, with the Boscombe side racking up just one victory across their last five Premier League travels (D2, L2). Lapses of concentration at the back have seen them concede 2+ goals on three occasions, suggesting their first league double over Luton since 2007/08 when they were in the third tier is not a foregone conclusion by any stretch of the imagination.

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