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First team

Five point preview: Valencia

The Valencia players celebrate a pre-season goal.

AFC Bournemouth AFC Bournemouth

Valencia are welcomed to Vitality Stadium today as the first of the Cherries' two pre-season games against European giants.

Napoli follow next Sunday, but before that we preview this afternoon's match with the Spanish side.

Valencia's pre-season

Los Che got their pre-season off to a flying start, winning their first two games 5-0 over FC Lausanne Sport and 3-0 against Sporting de Portugal.

They then faced New York Cosmos, falling to a 2-0 defeat in Canada, before concluding their North America sojourn with a 2-0 win over FC Cincinnati.

In the transfer window, Valencia have signed the Juventus pairing of Neto and former West Ham United loanee Simeone Zaza, the latter costing them £13.6m, with no major departures.

Familiar Faces

The two clubs faced each other in a friendly during last year's pre-season, with the game ending 1-1 at Vitality Stadium.

Enzo Perez opened the scoring for the away side with a strike in the 39th minute, with Valencia's goal cancelled out by a tidy Benik Afobe finish.

Valencia in 2016/17 

Ahead of last season Valencia sold some of their key players - including Shkodran Mustafi to Arsenal and Andre Gomes and Paco Alacacer to Barcelona - and struggled to find form throughout their 2016/17 campaign.

With three managers employed during the season, they were inconsistent for much of the year though ended positively.

Valencia fans will be hoping new manager Marcelino will be able to succeed where others have failed, the former Sevilla and Villarreal boss joining the club in May. 

One to Watch – João Cancelo

The 23-year-old Portuguese right-back has impressed for Portugal U21s and has been called up to the senior squad, where he has already won five caps and scored three times.

A swift, technical player who relishes the overlapping run, Cancelo joined from Benfica in 2015 and has bagged nine assists for Valencia to date.

Three down, three to go

Having played three games so far, pre-season preparations are well underway for the Cherries.

Eddie Howe's side have won their first three game, gaining positive results against GD Estoril Praia, Portsmouth and yesterday at Queens Park Rangers.

Yesterday's game saw a narrow 1-0 win over the Hoops in west London -Jordon Ibe the match-winner - with today's game, Yeovil Town on Wednesday and Napoli the remaining games before Bournemouth travel to West Brom for their Premier League curtain-raiser on 12th August. 

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