Wednesday, 20 September 2017

Josh King was due a goal

The way in which Josh King finished last season, it is no wonder that he was being linked with a move to Spurs and Everton over the summer. Yet, he has had a very quiet start to this season and is probably wondering why it took him until the Carabao Cup game last night to get on the score sheet.
King tip-toed his way to the winner.
Josh has had to move from being the number nine striker to playing just behind Jermain Defoe. While that means he will be a bit deeper, it should not have that much of a difference in seeing King get a few chances. In short, the chances have been limited for both strikers and it is hard to score when you are starved of the ball. 

Josh is one of the players that drives at the opposition, but that too has hardly been evidence. King's physicality is a big part of his game and we need to see more of that. Hopefully, that is changing though with the performance he put in against Brighton in mid-week, when he was able to make an impact as a sub. Marc Pugh found him in a good position, just inside the box, and King almost skipped his way past three Brighton defenders, as if on ice, before poking the ball over the line. 

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He has started in all five Premier League games and he was probably due a bit of luck in front of goal. I'd like to see him play even closer to Defoe, if he can, on Saturday as by both of them going through the middle at pace, Bournemouth should be able to give problems to Everton. The real threat of King comes when AFCB's wingers or full backs get behind teams and pull the ball back for him. At the moment the team is struggling to do this at pace and much of the play has been predictable.

It's noticeable that Bournemouth have not been awarded any penalties yet either and I wonder who has pulled rank on taking them? Defoe likes to take them and yet Josh has a pretty good success rate. We'll find out soon enough. But Josh will know that he needs to get going, Junior Stanislas is on his way back and Callum Wilson will only be a month or so behind at my guess.

The pressure is always on strikers to score, but King adds so much more to the team than just that, so I'm hoping he gets one or two more at Everton.

King finds his goal scoring touch to beat Brighton in the Carabao Cup

Match Description
AFCB 1 v  0 Brighton AET

Carabao Cup Third Round
Attendance: 10,372

Josh King came on as the super sub to earn AFCB a place in the fourth round of the Carabao Cup after a gruelling encounter that went into extra time. The Cherries may have dominated the early stages of the game, but Brighton had the best chances of the first half to go ahead and soon had the majority of possession. Izquierdo was the root of most of Brighton's good work and Boruc was called upon more than once. Jordan Ibe came closest for the Cherries in a first half that remained goalless. When Stanislas hit the post early in the second half the game looked destined to be goalless. Brighton came close to after Murphy intercepted back pass from Steve Cook. Lewis Cook and Lys Mousset nearly broke the deadlock, but it was all square at 0-0 on 90 minutes. Only King's late intervention prevented a penalty shoot out, but on shots and chances AFCB did enough to win through.

Bournemouth made nine changes to the team that played Brighton on Friday night with Simon Francis and Ryan Fraser retaining their starting roles, although Fraser would play at right back. The big news was that Junior Stanislas was back from injury and Lewis Cook would also get a start in midfield. There were also places for Emerson Hyndman and Connor Mahoney on the bench.
AFCB official photo: happy days! Pugh, Smith and King celebrate.
Official match Blog (comments by minutes) and Club Tweets
Tweet: And we're off! Come on you Cherries!!
02 Live Blog - We've dominated the ball and a tricky Francis ball over the top forces Hunemeier into an awkward clearance. It's really early, but a good start!
A quiet start here at Vitality Stadium, with both teams enjoying spells of possession.
05 We're bopping it about as we do, but no clear cut openings yet. We're enjoying plenty of the ball though and are well on the front foot.
06 It's Boruc who palms away Izquierdo's effort. The winger (we'll call him that - it's a hard name to type!) cut inside from the left and blasted a right footer which Boruc had to be alert to. First effort on goal of the evening.A good stop from Boruc early on, palming away Izquierdo's shot from the edge of the area, as Gosling clears.
08 From Mousset. Some good possession play gives him half a yard 25-yards out but his low drive is easy for Krul to save. Unlucky.
Mousset picks up the ball in the middle of the park and works himself some space but the shot is
comfortable for Krul.
10 Brad Smith steams forward and attempts a left-footer from 20-yards, Krul has it covered as it flies
wide. But again, positive inroads past the Albion back line.
11Some really, really good sharp passing around the edge of the edge of the box sees Afobe play a one-two with Stanislas, but Junior's touch can't control it when he looked certain to shoot!
As we type, Lys blazes over in the box. All us!
Tweet: Some great work from the Cherries, as Afobe wins the ball back and tees up Mousset but the Frenchman fires over!
18 Ibe, full of confidence from Friday, beats his man with ease and 25-yards out blasts one over.
Cherries playing some flowing stuff here, still goalless though.
Tweet: Some nice build up play for the Cherries sees an opening for Ibe, but the winger can't divert his shot on target.
21 Mousset looks up for this! He fizzes an effort from 25-yards from a tight angle, it's excellent technique and it skids low but Krul gets down early to stop it. Good effort from the Frenchman.
22 Boruc parries Skalak's effort and it falls kindly to Murphy who should tap Brighton into the lead here against the run of play. Somehow it hits Boruc from four-yards and goes out. Brighton should be winning, a huge let off.
Tweet: Double save from Boruc, as Skalak strikes from range, before Murphy almost nets with the follow up.
28 A short corner eventually finds Franno at the back post and he dinks a high effort into Lys who nods over from 10-yards.
Tweet: A break in play, as Mousset receives treatment on his back, but the Frenchman looks fine to continue.
31 Junior fizzes a fine ball into Benik's path in the box but as he holds off his man he goes down. Not seen a replay, but Benik looked convinced!
Tweet Penalty shout for the Cherries!! Stanislas plays a ball into Afobe's feet but he looks to be pulled down in the box.
32 Izquierdo is an inch away from opening the scoring.
Causing problems on the left, he beats Franno and smashes a low left footed effort in the box narrowly past the right post.

It's so close, they've had the best two chances.Tweet Chance for the visitors! Izquierdo gets in behind the Cherries defence, but his shot is dragged just wide.
36 Izquierdo is an inch away from opening the scoring. Causing problems on the left, he beats Franno and smashes a low left footed effort in the box narrowly past the right post. It's so close, they've had the best two chances.
41 More good play gets Benik free in the box, he shifts his body to beat the defender but it deflects off the Brighton man and just narrowly past the post! Could be 1-0!
Tweet: CLOSE! Ibe looks to feed through to Afobe but Brighton clear just in time for a corner. 

He makes beating players look so easy!
Ibe strides past his man and hits a low drive which Krul is at full stretch to palm away!
Excellent from Ibe!
Tweet: Great chance for the Cherries and it's Ibe again, this time striking from range as Krul gets fingertips to it.


Half time stats (BBC sourced)
AFCB    Possession 33%, Shots 9, Shots on target 4, Corners 5, Fouls 4
Brighton Possession 67%, Shots 3, Shots on target 1, Corners 1, Fouls 4

Second half
Tweet: We're back underway here at Vitality Stadium. Come on you Cherries!!
46: Back underway...Benik gets us underway for the second half.No changes for either side.Mousset's brilliant drive deflects into Afobe's path, and Benik headed it which forced Krul into a low save. But the save fell to Stanislas at an angle, four-yards out and Vitality Stadium were on their feet. But it rattled the inside of the post!! SO unlucky, It's somehow still 0-0!
Tweet: OFF THE POST! Mousset's long shot is helped on by Afobe and Stanislas can only hit the post from close range.
Brett Pitman is in the stands tonight. Welcome back Brett!
Tweet Now it's the visitors who nearly take the lead. Cook's backpass is intercepted but Murphy's shot is well saved.
Cookie plays a back pass short and Murphy goes clean through on goal and with the whole goal to aim at, somehow, Boruc manages to tip the effort, which looked a certain goal, around the post.
Some save that!
56 Ibe crosses and it reaches Stanislas at the back post. It's not the easiest chance but he volleys it from eight-yards and it flies well over. Another good opening.
Tweet: Ibe's cross takes a deflection on the way and falls to Stanislas, but the winger swings wildly over the bar. 
61 A moment of magic from Lewis Cook! He picked the ball up 25-yards out and shoots - it's a lovely effort and Krul is at full stretch to tip away! Corner!
Tweet What a shot from Lewis Cook! He drills one from 30-yards and only fingertips from Krul keep it out.
61 From the resulting corner, Mousset meets it, it's a looping header to the right post and Rosenior nods it off the line! We're getting closer, having a good spellTweet First Cherries change... Stanislas off, Pugh on 
63 It's Junior coming off - a good return from him and he could have had a goal or two.
68 IBE is causing problems! He cuts in from the right onto his left, hits a low drive which is blocked and it causes a scramble in the middle. Brighton snatch a clearance and it's away from danger.
Tweet Ibe in the thick of it once again. He cuts inside but sees the shot deflected on its way to goal.
73 Ibe at it again! He skins two men and tries to slip it into Benik but a Brighton defender nicks it away just before Benik is set to pull the trigger!
Tweet: Ibe causing more problems down the right. He dribbles 20 yards into the box, but his ball can't quite find Afobe.
78 Whacks one from 25-yards and it's not far away! Was always rising, but lovely hit from Weeman.
79 King is on. Mousset comes off, Lys looked lively once again, another good run out for him.
86 Ibe with a great knock, it sets Fraser away on the right. Weeman crosses and Pugh is waiting at the back post, he looks to make contact but Scheletto JUST clears!
Tweet: Fraser now bursts down the right and puts a great ball into the box, but Pugh can't quite get on the end of it.
87 Big save that! Brighton are sitting so deep, Afobe capitalises and hits a high effort from just inside the area and Krul is at full stretch once again to tip it away!
Tweet: The fourth official has indicated that there will be a minimum of four minutes added time here. 
Tweet The ball falls on the edge of the box to Fraser, who hits it well but straight at Krul.
90 Fraser zings a really good effort, it's low and firm but Krul has it covered. Looks like we're going to extra-time...

Stats (BBC sourced)
Bournemouth possession 41%, shots 23, shots on target 7, corners 11, fouls 7
Brighton possession 59%, shots 5, shots on target 2, corners 3, fouls 8

Extra time
Tweet: No way through. We're headed for extra time...
Tweet Great play from Lewis Cook who wins the ball back and starts the attack. Pugh's eventual shot goes over the bar.
94 Pugh cut inside into the area - trademark Pugh, apart from the finish which is sky high. Unlucky!
97 There's some tired legs out there! Ibe picks up the ball in the box and from 10-yards his goalbound effort is blocked! A really threatening opportunity and one which looked like it was going in from up here!
Tweet: King now races down the left and looks for Afobe in the box, but his touch sees the ball go beyond Krul's post.
Tweet: Ibe now with the close-range shot! It's deflected and out for a corner.
99 Finally we take the lead!
A lovely goal!

Pughie and King combine in the middle and the striker races into the area and hits a deft finish into the far corner.
Great interplay - we're ahead!
Tweet: GOAAAAAL!! IT'S JOSHUA KING!
Tweet: Some great link-up play between Pugh and King sees the Norwegian deftly finish from close-range. It's 1-0! 
Tweet 103: Izquierdo and Skalak are replaced by Knockaert and March for Albion's first two changes.
112 Adam Smith comes on for Ibe, who looks like he cramped up. Ibe has been good again this evening. This now poses a problem for fast typers, we've got two Cooks and two Smiths on!
Half time In extra time. We've been well on top and have the goal to show for it. Another 15 minutes to go.
Tweet: We are underway for the second half of extra time, as Propper replaces Schelotto.
110 King burns his man down the right hand side and crosses superbly but Benik is just in front of it and it zings to safety. Almost perfecly into Benik's path!
Tweet 110: Rosenior is replaced by Mateju for Albion's fourth change.
111 Adam Smith could score! Fraser cross is cleared but it's perfectly into Smith's path and he wallops it wide of the left post from 14-yards. Could be 2-0 and surely passage would've been sealed!
Tweet Adam Smith finds Fraser well down the right, but the Brighton defender is there for the cross and it's cleared.
We get four subs now, as we're in extra time. Weeman makes way for Emerson Hyndman. Hyndman has been involved with the under-21s recently.
Tweet: There will be a minimum of four minutes added on at the end of extra-time.
Tweet: Full time: AFC Bournemouth 1-0

Bournemouth are through to the fourth round of the Carabao Cup.


Stats (BBC sourced)
Bournemouth possession 42%, shots 29, shots on target 9, corners 14, fouls 10
Brighton possession 58%, shots 8, shots on target 3, corners 5, fouls 11

AFCB

Boruc, Fraser, (Hyndman 116) Francis, S Cook, B Smith, Stanislas (Pugh 61), L Cook, Gosling, Ibe (A Smith 100), Mousset (King 79), Afobe

AFCB Subs
Ramsdale, A Smith, Simpson, Hyndman, Pugh, Mahoney, King

Brighton
Krul, Goldson, Hünemeier, Rosenior (Mateju 110), Schelotto (Pröpper 105), Ahannach, Molumby, Bong, Skalak, Murphy, Izquierdo Mena (Knockaert 104)

Brighton Subs
Dunk, Knockaert, Mäenpää, March, Pröpper, Mateju, Tilley

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

The new men are starting to making an impact at AFCB

It may be that AFCB have been suffering a little from integrating their new players into the starting line up, despite these players having played for the club before. This could account for the side's slow start, but it is strange as Asmir Begovic, Nathan Aké and Jermain Defoe have all played reasonably well and yet their positions run right through the spine of the side and change in this main part of the team is going to take a little time for other players to get used to.
Bournemouth just need games to start getting more integrated.
Eddie Howe has been disappointed about the start to the season but he hasn't come out and said what he really feels is the reason for the slow start. Yes, the Cherries did not play well enough an ddid not create as many chances a every one would have liked in those early games but it was a puzzle even t him as to why so many players seemed to be off form. The only reason I can come up with is that by playing the new players who came in over the summer the structure and stability of the side has been affected slightly. While the new players have played at the club before, it is only Aké that was here last season and it's not always possible to expect players to just fit back into the side without having some difficulties.

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Hopefully the games that have gone will have helped the players move on from these early problems. I believe we should see some more consistent performances now as things are starting to bed down. The changes at centre-back have particularly not helped the team settle and it will be important for Eddie Howe to come to a conclusion on what his defence should be for the majority of the season as quickly as he can. With four players though vying for two spots which includes the captain though, it is not going to be as clear cut as usual seasons, especially if they all remain fit.

When Junior Stanislas and Callum Wilson also declare themselves fully fit the competition will rise steeply among the forwards. This competition up front I find more healthy than at the back as when s a striker hits from you don't take him out of the team.

I think there is not much to call between Francis, Steve Cook, Nathan Aké and Tyrone Mings and these players will have a stop start season for a while if Eddie does not decide quickly to stick to the two that he feels will do best for the side.

It's Brighton again but the Carabao Cup this time

Bournemouth will line up against Brighton again knowing that they disappointed in the cups last season and have a good chance of progressing to the latter stages of the Carabao Cup. It will be attempted by a much changed team from the one that took on the Seagulls a few days ago, but it will be tightly monitored as to how many regulars are kept in the starting line up.
Brighton come back to Dean Court for their League Cup tie against the Cherries tonight.

Having gone out so quickly last season, I'm hoping that Eddie puts some of his big hitter son the bench like Defoe and King to bring on if need be in the second half. It's okay to give players who haven't been getting games at the club to my mind though, as Eddie may find that someone is playing well enough to then start for the next Premier League game. If he always plays the same players he won't learn much about other in testing games.

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Still how many players should he rest and which ones should he play? The keeper jersey will surely be given to Artur Boruc and Steve Cook will must likely come back into central defence after his recent knock. Dan Gosling and Lewis Cook must be favourites to play in the middle, while Benik Afobe and Lys Mousset will probably complete the central spine of the team. But Howe has room for flexibility and has mentioned that Stanislas is close to being fully fit, while Jordan Ibe only played some 30 minutes against and Ryan Fraser has started all five league games but might find he is rested for the cup games. 

Whether Connor Mahoney or Emerson Hyndman are any closer to getting involved was not shared by Howe in his press conference, and I imagine that the manager is not going to put all his young players under pressure in a game like this that he is very keen on winning. Eddie may do well to remember what happened last season and that it is good to have plenty of experience on the field, so I'm hoping he doesn't change all 11 from the last game, but I suspect it will be most of them.

My guess is the team could look something like this.


AFCB
Boruc, A Smith, S Cook, Mings, B Smith, Ibe, S Lewis, Gosling, Fraser, Mousset, Afobe 


Subs from
Ramsdale, Francis, Aké, Daniels, Hyndman, Surman, Mahoney, King, Defoe

Brighton beat Barnet 1-0 in the second round and their starting line up that night was as follows.


Brighton
Mäenpää, Rosenior, Goldson, Hünemeier, Bong, Molumby, Ince, Knockaert, Towell, Skalak, Hemed



In other news, AFCB have announced that selected supporters will be able to collaborate with Stadimax on their needs for the design of the new AFCB stadium.

Monday, 18 September 2017

Is Ibe now settled at AFCB?

Eddie Howe has been praising Jordan Ibe for his ability to make an impact from the bench and it is apparent that Ibe is determined to have a better season than he did in 2016-17. He knows he has to get his head down and start to deliver and if he can build up a good understanding with Jermain Defoe, many of Bournemouth's problems this season could quickly be overcome.
Ibe has been slow to get into the groove at AFCB but he's staring to pick up now.
Ibe has been a player that is easy to pick on for his inability to get crosses into the box and make the most of his situation when he has beaten the first man. His decision making is really his weak link from what I can see, and if Eddie Howe can get him to pick his head up and find another Bournemouth player once he has the run on a defence, then he will become a more regular starter. Bournemouth also need Ibe to help out the defence as well, and this is another side of his game where Howe could do some more work with Ibe.

The main thing is that Ibe is learning and starting to take things on board which must be satisfying for Howe. Bournemouth need to see a player that is fearless and not afraid of taking players on. Even when there were times when it didn't come off against Brighton, he hurried back to try and win the ball back and we would not have done that last season. Once the understandings come though with the strikers and Adam Smith, it would not surprise me if Ibe becomes more of a fans' favourite at Dean Court. He has age on his side and just needs to be more organised in how he plays and to really get to enjoy going past defenders again.

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The big difference from Ibe will probably come when he gets that first goal that he has been waiting for. He has to believe he is going to score for it to happen though, and we need to see the positive body language that we saw in the Brighton league game from Ibe. He certainly seems a more settled player this season, and if he continues to learn off Eddie Howe we could find that he was a decent buy, having been given time to see how he best fits into this Bournemouth side. 

AFCB's heads kept their nerve against Brighton to get their win

It would have been simple for the heads to go down when Brighton went ahead in the last match. The mood deteriorated pretty quickly, and the Albion fans were suddenly in full voice, so with four defeats in a row it would not have been unreasonable to expect the Bournemouth players to fold. They didn't though and instead they basically looked at themselves and believed they were well in the game and could get a goal back.

Asmir Begovic at the end of the game against Brighton.
In a way it is probably better for the Cherries' needs that they did get a win by coming from behind rather than strolling to a two or three-nil win with ease. If they had done the latter, they might have believed that they were completely fixed and on song to put a similar amount of goals past their next opponents. By struggling to find an equaliser and then digging out a winner and managing to hold on, AFCB will feel that the game took a lot out of them. They will benefit from the mental belief that they can get back in games.

Turning around the score line quickly after AFCB had gone behind was very important in stopping any thoughts of feeling sorry for themselves. They just had to get on with it and whether the goal to equalise would have come without a sub being made is hard to say. But Eddie Howe wanted Ibe to know that he deserved the plaudits by Eddie not taking any praise for making the substitution when he did, but rather expressing that Ibe is a talented player that can make things happen. Ibe needs to believe that and little comments like that to get a player enjoying what he is doing will make all the difference in the long-run.

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The experience of coming from behind always helps bond the team. They have that shared memory of being in a bit of a hole and knowing that they managed to get out of it. Now they must start to play more like they did when they felt they had to get back into the game - it was swift passing and plenty of runners to pick out. The execution is what has been lacking in the last third, but by trying different ways to get players into shooting positions the pressure ultimately told on Brighton. AFCB regained their intensity of play in the opposition's half and while it was a bit of a scrambled win it will make a huge difference this week to the mood in the camp.

Ask the Fans - Match Report AFCB v Brighton


Sunday, 17 September 2017

It's a collector's item – Surman scores!

Andrew Surman has not had the best of press of late from disgruntled fans who have not been impressed by he sideways passing and he can't have found it easy to feel that everyone is behind him at times. But against Brighton he answered his critics in the best way possible by getting on the score sheet, which is a very rare event for Andrew.

This was the weekend that Andrew Surman netted
 his first Premier League goal with Bournemouth against Brighton.
While Surman does not get forward often, Eddie Howe says he is one of the best finishers and the composed way in which he allowed defenders to clip pass him before opening up the goal by getting the ball onto his favoured left foot was very elegantly done. Like many, I had been shouting at Surman to shoot early, but he delayed to such an extent that it made the finish easier for himself in the end. There was no way that Mathew Ryan in the Brighton goal was getting any where near the well placed shot.

The goal came at a good time for the Cherries as it was apparent that the dissatisfaction in going a goal behind was starting to raise the anger in some and while the frustrations of a fan are never easy to bare, it was almost as if Surman wanted to shut up a few voices that hadn't been keen on him start the game. Out of all AFCB's players, he was probably the best one to score, as by doing so his critics were forced to acknowledge that he was doing his best and his best was pretty good. It brought the team together and there was a surge of AFCB intent to go and get the winner.

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Surman stepped up well and played his part in the Bournemouth comeback. His job in keeping the ball moving is often underrated and while he has been a bit short on form, Eddie Howe clearly trusts him to be one of the guiding forces of the team. I also think that it was necessary for AFCB to have their most senior players available on the pitch in this game, as it is the experienced voices that have come out of bad spells before and who know when players need either encouragement or a bit of a kick to do their job better.

Surman may not be everyone's favourite but when he gets it right he makes tehgame look very simple.

Saturday, 16 September 2017

Ibe inspires Bournemouth to first win against Brighton 2-1

Match Report
15 September 2017
AFCB 2 v 1 Brighton & Hove Albion
Attendance: 10, 369
Simon Francis is back to lead the side out.
Everybody in the ground knew that Bournemouth needed a win and the win did come but only after a lot of huffing and puffing against a determined Brighton side who could have felt hard done by to come away with nothing. The Cherries had a dominant first half, but it was a stalemate with neither side doing a lot to keep the keepers busy, but the second half came to life after Shane Duffy had a header cleared off the line by Andrew Surman, and from the following corner Brighton were unlucky again to see the ball come off the underside of the bar before Begovic grabbed it. The warnings were not taken by Bournemouth though and Brighton took the lead following a deep cross from Pascal Gross that was headed in by Solly March. The substitution of Jordan Ibe turned things around though for Eddie Howe's side as first Ibe's back heel opened the door for Andrew Surman to slip int he equaliser, and that was quickly followed by a slide pass to Defoe who won the game with his first Bournemouth goal in 16 years.
Goal scorers Defoe and Surman pre-match.
Steve Cook was missing from the squad having taken a knock in training earlier in the day, but Marc Pugh, Andrew Surman and Simon Francis all cam into the starting 11. Benike Afobe was back on the bench and Mings and Gosling joined him there having started in the previous match.
Brighton players finish their warm up.
More pictures are on Match Day Gallery.

Bournemouth found it hard to get going in the match despite having much of the possession. It was not that they were a bag of nerves but when they weaved their intricate patterns in front of Brighton's box they could not unlock the defence with runners. Instead, we saw Brighton make the first attempt on goal when Anthony Knockaert turned Charlie Daniels on half was and ran inside to shoot wide from 30 yards outs.

Arter's reply was much more wayward after 11 minutes but at least it was a shot from the Cherries who were beginning to look a little ill at ease when confronted with two lines of yellow shirts to get through. 

Josh King did a little better when he pounced on a misdirected Brighton pass in their own half and his 30 yard shot from in front of the D deflected for a Bournemouth corner on 14 minutes. Brighton had a threat to though and Simon Francis had to tidy up ahead of Tomer Hemed's intent to get past Bournemouth's back line.

Surman's passing of the ball to the touchline hoping for Adam Smith to speed in and cross was just a sign of how out of kilter the Cherries were when they got into the final third. Arter put a defence splitting pass in for Daniels but when the next pass to Pugh enabled a shot, it was driven well over the goal.

Pugh then slipped Defoe in and while the striker turned quickly he could not get his shot on target as it sped past the right post o 30 minutes. At the break it was still goalless, even if AFCB had looked the team that had the most intention of getting forward.


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Where are the goals?
Second half
The second half would see much more goal mouth action from the start as Shane Duffy rose well to head the ball towards goal before Surman managed to head it off the line before Davy Propper headed back again and Begovic and Surman both kept the attempt out. Another Duffy header moments later from a Brighton corner was redirected by Dale Stephens header that crashed against the underside of the bar.

Bournemouth were living dangerously and they succumbed to another flighted ball from Pascal Gross that was headed in by Solly March on 55 minutes. Daniels had not stopped the cross from coming in and the ball had drifted over Francis perfectly for the goalscorer with Adam Smith unable to get off the ground.

Bournemouth fans were quiet but then soon turned to calls for Lewis Cook with Arter and Surman misfiring in the middle. Eddie Howe did make a sub, but not the one that the fans were shouting for. It was Jordan Ibe who replaced Ryan Fraser on 65 minutes and within a minute of coming on he had made the perfect assist, back heeling the ball in the box to Surman, who neatly slipped the ball from his right foot to his left, slinking past Lewis Dunk, before sweeping his left foot shot wide of Mathew Ryan's right arm  to make it 1-1 on 67 minutes.

The relief was immense and it was like a big weight being taken off the players' shoulders. Now they were in a game and Jordan Ibe made another impact by firing a shot that was deflected over second later. The winner came when he held off two Brighton defenders outside the box before wrapping his right foot round the ball to flick it through to Defoe who turned with a predator instinct to score in the bottom left corner. It was 2-1 with 73 minutes gone.

Composure was what Bournemouth needed now. Brighton subbed Knockaert for Jose Izquierdo and Pascal Gross for the returning Glenn Murray on 76 minutes.

Benike Afobe then replaced goalscorer Jermain Defoe on 78 minutes. Afobe was the energy man and he made it difficult for Brighton players to build their attacks.  While Liam Rosenoir had a go from range that flew well over, Begovic would see it the match will little more to worry him.

In fact, it was Bournemouth looking for their third as full time approached. Josh King was felled in the D as he looked about to pull the trigger. The free kick just went wide of the right post from Jordan Ibe, but it didn't matter.

Four minutes of extra time saw Dan Gosling replace Josh King, but it was all celebrations come  the final whistle for Bournemouth fans who has at least seen their team lay with a bit of defiance and pride in their performance.
The result was very hard to come by but AFCB
get over the line to get their first win of 2017-18.
Summary
This game could easily have gone either way, but for a few goal line clearances and a cross bar. It was not a majestic win by the Cherries, more of a scrambled comeback or salvage operation that generated three points. Bournemouth did play well in parts, but it still wasn't characterised with the kind of movement that is sharp enough to get behind Brighton's back line often. Teams have learnt to be well-organised against Eddie Howe's side and it's becoming a rarity to see a clean sheet at Dean Court these days. So it is still work in progress, but this was more of a team performance to dig out the win and that should give the whole team a lift. But it can only really be enjoyed if the players believe that what they are doing now is capable of getting them up the league. At the moment, the fans can see that there is much more to come from this squad, but hopefully they will be patient and remain behind the team and Howe and Tindall as they look to build on the positives from this game.


Gosling just came on for a few minutes at the end of the game.


Afobe acknowledges the home support.
Defoe and Ibe talk to Sky Sports.

Eddie at last has something to smile about.

AFCB

Begovic, A Smith, Francis, Aké, Daniels, Fraser (Ibe 65), Arter, Surman, Pugh, King (Gosling 90+1),
Defoe (Afobe 78)


AFCB Substitutes
Boruc, Mings, Gosling, L Cook, Mousset, Ibe, Afobe

AFCB Ratings
Begovic 6, A Smith 5, Francis 5, Aké 7, Daniels 6, Fraser 5 (Ibe 7), Arter 5, Surman 6,
Pugh 5, 
King 5, Defoe 6 (Afobe 6)

Cherry Chimes' MOM - Jordan Ibe

Brighton
Ryan, Rosenior, Duffy, Dunk, Suttner, Knockaert (Izquierdo 76), Stephens, Pröpper, March,
Gross (Murray), Hemed

Brighton Substitutes

Hünemeier, Mäenpää, Murphy, Murray, Goldson, Izquierdo, Schelotto

Referee Watch: Craig Dawson 5/10 - did not want to get any yellow cards out, but he kept the game flowing well even if there were some dubious free kicks awarded.
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