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Irvine ready for Cherries challenge

28 October 2014

Albion prepare for Bournemouth test

ALAN Irvine is ready for a 'tough' challenge tonight as Albion prepare to face a Bournemouth side who scored eight goals in their last match.

The Baggies travel to the south coast for the Capital One Cup clash against the in-form Cherries, who blitzed Birmingham City 8-0 at St Andrew's on Saturday.

Irvine is looking forward to tonight's game - not least as there is a quarter-final berth at stake.

Albion will be without Jonas Olsson, who has an Achilles injury, while Silvestre Varela is still recovering from a minor groin operation.

Claudio Yacob returned to England from Argentina on Sunday but will play no part tonight, having not trained for 10 days.

And the Albion head coach intends putting out an experienced side.

"It's a really important game for us," said Irvine.

"We want to get a good result and progress to the next round. We will put out a team of first team players.

"As head coach I have to manage the whole squad and players who haven't been playing need to have a platform to impress. 

"It's very important that any players who are in the first team squad are ready to play in the Premier League if called upon."

Some bookmakers have made the Championship high-flyers favourites for tonight's fixture.

Irvine is not surprised given a recent run of form that has seen Eddie Howe's men win six of their last seven games, scoring 19 goals in the process.

"I'm not surprised to hear that," added Irvine.

"We're going to their ground and they're playing really well at the moment. 

"It's something I'll use - it reinforces the fact it's a difficult game for us."

Speaking about their recent form, Irvine continued: "I saw them lose to Derby which was a high quality Championship game. 

"I also saw them vs Reading when they were excellent and won 3-0.

"I have no doubt that this will be a tough task for our lads.

"I had a think about their strengths and weaknesses on the long drive home from their match last week and we've work on those."

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