Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe is excited by the opportunity of testing his charges against Liverpool in Saturday's FA Cup clash.

The Cherries, who sit 16th in the Championship, will welcome Brendan Rodgers' men to Goldstone Stadium for the fourth-round tie, which has captured the imagination of the squad and the town on the south coast.

"The build up to this has been special," Howe said in his pre-match press conference. "There have been bigger games but in terms of one-off occasions this beats it."

Liverpool have only ever faced Bournemouth competitively in the FA Cup, ousting them by a 4-1 scoreline in 1927 and 1968 at Anfield - both being replays after draws at Dean Court.

The Merseysiders did face the Cherries away in a friendly to commemorate their 100th birthday in 2000, but there was no gift for the hosts as the Reds ran out 4-0 winners.

"It's a great challenge. It's a rare opportunity to pit our wits against one of the best teams in the world," Howe continued.

"This is a really special game. Not just for us as players but as fans, and the buzz around the town. We don't want to show Liverpool too much respect and freeze on the occasion."

Howe is especially looking forward to being in the opposing dugout to Brendan Rodgers, a manager he greatly admires.

"Brendan is someone I look up to. I've been lucky enough to to meet him and build a relationship. He deserves the success he gets.

"I learnt a great deal from Brendan. He's a real gentleman and has time for everybody. He treats his players the same," he added.

Bournemouth captain Tommy Elphick shared the tactician's sentiments.

"We aspire to be like Liverpool so it's a good time to play them to see how far off we are," he said.

"There's a lot to learn from a team like Liverpool and a manager like Brendan Rodgers.

"The key is having no fear. If you give them too much respect they will hurt you." 

As a defender, Elphick is particularly intrigued by the task of silencing the emphatic Luis Suarez.

"Luis Suarez is one of the best three players in the world. To be on the pitch with him will be a privilege," said the Cherries skipper.

Howe knows that his captain will be up against it if the Uruguayan, who's netted five goals in seven FA Cup appearances, features on Saturday.

"Better managers and players have tried to keep Suarez quiet and failed. It's one of the biggest challenges in world football," he admitted.