Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe is wary of the threat Sam Allardyce’s Everton carry and hopes his side can use it as extra motivation for a result on Saturday.
A draw at West Brom on Boxing Day extended the Toffees’ unbeaten run to eight games, with boss Allardyce yet to lose in his first seven matches in charge.
The Cherries, on the other hand, moved to eight Premier League matches without a victory after a 3-3 draw with West Ham last time out.
Howe told the official Bournemouth website: “It’s another tough game. Sam has done a great job in such a short period of time, but we have to use that as a motivating factor for us.
“He (Allardyce) has transformed the club in a very short period of time. They’ve always had some very good players, but he’s given them confidence and they’ve been able to pick up some very good results.
“We’ve had some tough encounters against Sam in the past. He’s a really good guy and great character. He’s shown that wherever he has been he has a great way of building teams and momentum.
“Everton have built some momentum and confidence in the last month and there’s no doubt that they will be tough opposition. That said, we know what we’re capable of.”
Ninth-placed Everton’s current top scorer is Wayne Rooney, who has netted 10 times in the league.
The 32-year-old missed the recent goalless draws against Chelsea and the Baggies due to illness but has recovered in time for the game at the Vitality Stadium.
Howe is aware of the former Manchester United captain’s power on the pitch, but warned his side to keep account of the whole Everton team.
He added: “Wayne Rooney has always had that goalscoring know-how and pedigree. He’s been an incredible player, but we know that he isn’t their only dangerman.”
Howe remains without striker Jermain Defoe (ankle), Tyrone Mings (back) and Junior Stanislas (hamstring), while Charlie Daniels (groin), Andrew Surman (shoulder), Harry Arter (calf) and Josh King (hamstring) will be assessed before the match.
Despite the injury worries, Howe is confident Bournemouth can build on some strong home performances this season.
He added: “I don’t think there has been a lot wrong with our performances at home.
“We’ve dropped a few points in games that we probably shouldn’t have. The key thing is that we now build on those recent positive performances.”