Bournemouth boss Andoni Iraola rules out two key players for Liverpool’s clash

Bournemouth will miss the services of two key players ahead of Liverpool clash.

Bournemouth manager Andoni Iraola has confirmed that Adam Smith and Milos Kerkez will miss Sunday’s Premier League clash with Liverpool.

The Cherries, who have lost once in their last nine matches across all competitions will be without the services of the two players who have contributed immensely for the side this season.

Smith was absent for the Emirates FA Cup win against QPR, while Kerkez has been on the sidelines since the start of December in the 3-0 win against Manchester United.

Iraola, however, refused to rule out Lloyd Kelly for the game at the Vitality Stadium.

Speaking at his pre-match press conference, the former Rayo Vallecano manager said: “We have Adam Smith out still as he missed the game against QPR.”

“On top of that, Milos Kerkez is still definitely out, while Ryan Fredericks and Tyler Adams are longer term injuries.

“Lloyd Kelly is the only player who I would leave it open to, but he’s definitely not 100% guaranteed to play. He’s the only one who has a slight chance of being in the squad.”

Bournemouth will also be without Marcos Senesi due to suspension after he received his fifth booking of the season in the last Premier League game against Tottenham.

Antoine Semenyo and Dango Ouattara are currently representing Ghana and Burkina Faso at the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations while James Hill is back in contention after returning from his successful loan spell with Blackburn Rovers.

Bournemouth lost 3-1 to Liverpool in August and Andoni Iraola believes that the Cherries will have to be at their best to beat Liverpool.

“I’m quite happy with the two games we have played against Liverpool, especially the second one in the Carabao Cup but, even then, we haven’t been able to take anything from them,” he said.

“They are top of the league, they are the most in-form team in the Premier League and they have lost one game all season when they finished with nine players.

“If we want to beat them, it’s not enough to just be at our level. We have to do something really good.

“We have to be at our best, we have to be clinical up front and we don’t want to make any mistakes. It takes a lot to beat these kind of teams.

“We have to give ourselves chances to score and try to limit them. It’s not going to be easy because they have elite-level players.

“But if we play like we did during November and December, I think we will have a chance.”

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