Thursday, 17 January 2019

Solanke can't be fit soon enough

When AFCB fell 10 down against Everton, I looked at what was on the bench and there were few attacking options for Howe. He had Lys Mousset and Jordan Ibe, and there was little belief that either one of them would be able to take a match saving chance if it fell to them on their recent form.
Has Mousset blown his chance at AFCB?
We don't know how Solanke will fit into the team at the moment. If Callum Wilson needs a bit more time to get back to full fitness, Howe will be sweating on his front men. Usually it has been Bournemouth's good fortune to see King score if Wilson isn't or vice versa, but the importance of Callum Wilson is simply going to grow if Bournemouth keep getting blank sheets when he is unable to play.

On current for though, it would be tempting to see Solanke and Wilson provide the spearhead for Bournemouth's attack. Waiting until February though for Solanke is really frustrating and Bournemouth need points. While goals aren't usually a problem for Bournemouth it is clear that without the presence of Wilson, Bournemouth look a much less threatening team.
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It has been fortunate for King and Mousset that Wilson has been making the headlines for a while now, but  the focus is on them while he is struggling to regain fitness. If Solanke can be a big goal scoring addition to the team, then we could even see King and Mousset being lined up for moves away from the club come next summer.

Wednesday, 16 January 2019

Should AFCB up David Brooks' pay to ward off bids?

The Sun has reported that David Brooks will be offered a huge pay rise to keep him at the club with mounting interest from Manchester United and Tottenham. It is unusual for Bournemouth to have this kind of interest in their players and Bournemouth may be forced to increase the young Welshman's wages to keep him settled on the south coast.
AFCB would be loathed to see Brooks depart.
While Bournemouth have to be careful with their pay structure, David Brooks is a player that has already shown how much of an asset he can be in the Premier League and is probably among the favourites to be the Cherries' player of the season. But does that mean Bournemouth should bump up his wages, while others may be disappointed that there salaries don't go up? It will be a matter of internal decision-making. However, I can't see Bournemouth being happy to just let a Man United or Tottenham come in for the player and snatch him away because they can offer bigger wages.

David Brooks may not himself feel ready yet to go to such a top club, even if Ryan Giggs is keen to get the player to Manchester. The environment in which Brooks develops his game in the next two to three years is going to be massively important for him and for Wales. While Giggs would no doubt be telling him what he could have at Manchester United, Brooks should know that United are an unsettled club that are struggling to get their youth players coming through. That could be changing with Mourinho now out of the way, but Eddie Howe has already been taking Brooks' game on and that kind of trust and understanding is the kind of development that Brooks surely left Sheffield United for.


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The temptation to cash in on Brooks would be too soon for Bournemouth. We have seen what he can do already and in 12 months time he could be even better equipped to take Premier League sides apart.

Transfer News: Chris Mepham of Brentford could be AFCB's next signing in the January window, says the Sun.

Would United target Eddie Howe just to get to Aké and Brooks?

The Daily Express was happy to plaster Eddie Howe's name all over the summer vacancy at Manchester United yesterday. The Bournemouth manager must be getting quite used to being linked with top vacancies especially with Danny Murphy piping up again to try and give Howe an exit visa from AFCB, even if he doesn't want it.
Eddie Howe is getting used to being linked to other jobs.
Bournemouth fans might have thought that the managerial swoops for Eddie Howe would start to cool off after the drop in form that the Cherries have had and their poor record against the top six this season that have yielded no points at all. On the contrary, United want a manager to develop their youth players and see Howe as a perfect fit.

What would worry me about such a development would not only be the snatching of Eddie Howe and Jason Tindall from the club, but also the star players that have carefully been gathered at Dean Court like David Brooks, Callum Wilson and Nathan Aké. As United are going to find it hard to pull some of these players away while Howe is at Bournemouth, they could try and go for the clean sweep by grabbing Eddie first.

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The Englishman might like to see a manager such as Gareth Southgate or Eddie Howe at United, and the papers have a way of testing the waters with these 'outsider' headlines to see if there is a reaction to a suggested managerial change. But Howe has not done well enough this season to put his name in the first three for the Man United job in my view. United can go for just about any manager in the world and they would have to look first at managers with Champions League experience and cup success before assessing other options. Well, at least I hope that is so. The conspiracy theory of it being a plot to take away some of Bournemouth's top players at the same time doesn't bare thinking about!

Tuesday, 15 January 2019

Do Bournemouth have a weak underbelly?

Bournemouth can be slightly satisfied that they only conceded two goals in their last game compared to the threes and fours that they have been conceding. Any defeat in the Premier League is disappointing and there was probably no need for the team to push everyone up and concede the second goal, but Bournemouth are always prepared to take that risk.
The goals keep going in at the wrong end.

What is frustrating is that Bournemouth were well in this game against Everton. They had the Goodison crowd on the home team's backs. Everton were not able to get their game going and Bournemouth looked well on top. Yet, as soon as the players came out in the second half, Bournemouth didn't have quite the same energy. They switched off after a corner and to leave a big man like Zouma unmarked so close to goal was sloppy.

Once Bournemouth were a goal down, it was going to be a hard task to get back level. Everton were confident that they could see the game out and Bournemouth were deflated that they had again made a costly mistake. While comebacks are easier at home, they are extremely difficult to do at away games. Everton might not have played well but they got over the line. Bournemouth don't seem to be able to stay in these kind of games when they are close and still shoot themselves in the foot when they could be content with a good away point. It was probably Bournemouth's strongest defence for a while, but the back four will not be able to take a lot of comfort from the result.



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Without the firepower of Wilson, they were always likely to find it hard to score many goals at Goodison. The plan was probably to get one and play counter-attacking football. But when that goal didn't come it was like Bournemouth didn't have anything else. But Howe was never going to go defensive and that is probably what Marco Silva knew. There would always be a chance for Everton the longer the game went on, because Bournemouth don't shut up shop. Being hard to beat is sometimes not a bad habit to get into when you are playing away from home against a similarly matched team. This was a game where Bournemouth risked everything, when perhaps they needn't had to. A solid clean sheet would have been very valuable.

Premier Talk - Huddersfield part company with David Wagner

Performance level improves but no points for Cherries

It was a much improved performance from AFCB at Everon even though the team did not pick up any points. Eddie Howe was content with the way that Bournemouth attacked the game in the first half. But the team did not take their chances.
The line up may have changed but picking up points is still the aim.
The plus points included the play of Nathaniel Clyne who managed to make hoax Premier League debut for Bournemouth. The defence looked a lot more in control and calm under pressure and had they held firm we might have been talking if a good was point at Everton. The confidence has been taken a hit and the decision s are not going Bournemouth’s way.

The form of David Brooks remains strong. Ryan Fraser is still creating chances and Lerma managed to get throughout the game without being booked. But the big bonus is that Adam Smith was back and he managed to play the full 90 minutes. It was a big call to put Smith in at left-back but he doesn't let anyone down and played extremely well. The team now needs to get used to this back four. Howe would do well just to concentrate on getting the defence really tight for the visit of West Ham who are in great form.
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If Bournemouth can get a clean sheet then at least they will get something on the board and in this recent poor run a point is nothing to feel sorry about.

PremierTalk - Huddersfield part company with David Wagner

Monday, 14 January 2019

Was it a penalty on Brooks?

Bournemouth have had their fare share of penalties this season ask Burnley fans who haven't had any to my knowledge! But some teams will swear that our players go down too easily and you can agree with that at times. But I don't think Bournemouth have the biggest players on the pitch, and they come up against some stringer professionals who are often slower and do get caught out with the pace for Bournemouth's attacking players.
David Brooks didn't win a penalty but he is a hazard when making driving runs into the box?
Against Everton Bournemouth were claiming another penalty when David Brooks went down in the box from Gueye's challenge. Some will say it would have been a soft penalty if it had been given, but penalties are either penalties or not penalties, soft or not. Referees need to ask themselves would that be a foul if it had occurred outside the box? That is where I get annoyed when penalties like the potential one at Everton were not given. Outside the box Anthony Taylor was hardly off his whistle.

Of course, you can't rely on penalties to be given every game to win them. Bournemouth need to score goals in open play and from set pieces and they had some really good opportunities. Stanislas might have done better from his free kick in the first half and Brooks might have steered his first half shot just inside the post rather than on it. But when you get decisions not going your way, there is a discomfort when you see a potential penalty not given - it's human nature. It's a very subjective part of the game as you know soft or not in some games they will be given while in others they are not.

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There was no right or wrong call for fans on the Brooks' potential penalty, as the decision lies with the referee only and he didn't give it. But players and fans are entitled to their opinion, even if it doesn't matter what they feel. How much contact does there need to be to be a foul? It's a personal view - what is enough for some people isn't enough for others. But Eddie Howe was right in saying that the game could have turned decisively in AFCB's favour if a penalty had been given to reflect the team's dominance.

Personally, I don't think Taylor was consistent in his decision making. Gueye didn't get anything of the ball but got enough of David Brooks for me. It's a talking point, but we know who's view counts. You have to hope these things balance themselves out.

Bournemouth slip to sixth away defeat in a row at Everton

Match Report
Everton 2 v 0 AFCB
13 January 2019
Attendance: 38,113
AFCB fail for a fourth Premier League time to get a win at Goodison.
A costly lesson for Bournemouth was not to score when they were on top. Bournemouth did everything but score in the first half. David Brooks hit the post and was unfortunate not to win a penalty. Gradually, Everton came int the game and started to put balls into the box with Keane going close for the home team with a header just over the bar. The goals in the second half were a simple header for Zouma that wasn't marked, and a breakaway from substitute Dominic Calvert-Lewin that made it look easy for Everton, but it was far from that.

Bournemouth had to make a few changes starting with Callum Wilson who was out injured with a hamstring strain. Nathaniel Clyne would make his first Premier League start for Bournemouth and Adam Smith returned from injury to play at left back, ousting Charlie Daniels. Bournemouth set up 4-4-2 with King and Stanislas playing up front.

Match Description
Fraser got in an early cross and King just had the ball taken off his toes before he could get his shot away. A mistake from Brooks sees the ball go out of play.

Fraser is hobbling a bit after a challenge from Coleman. But it's Everton that have a free kick with Adam Smith fouling Lookman. Begovic dropped on it just in time.

Richarlison is caught offside, but AFCB have to watch the front man's breaks. Bournemouth are making it hard for Everton to play out from the back. Clyne puts in a deep cross and King is beaten to the header. Fraser picks up the pieces and squares it to King in front of goal but Pickford has somehow kept on to the ball with King right on top of him.

Bournemouth are starting to pass well and are robbing Everton in midfield. Brooks puts in a good cross and Fraser should have been given a free kick after Gueye's challenge, but Brooks has a free kick. The ball goes long and Brooks gets it and he's down in the box why wasn't that a penalty? Gueye shoves Brooks and didn't get a touch on the ball.

Everton are riding their luck. Lerma goes diagonal to Fraser and Lerma has a dig from distance ,but it's wide. A great start from Bournemouth after 13 minutes. Steve Cook blocks a shot from Lookman.

King wins the ball in the middle, Stanislas plays in Brooks and the shot hits the post! So unlucky! At the other end Lookman is blocked. Bournemouth really should be ahead.

Bernard wins an Everton corner off of Stanislas. Stanislas breaks and gets the ball out to King. The referee is playing advantage, but no yellow cards yet. Aké gets a food defensive header in. King this time gets a free kick off Gomes.

Fraser wins the ball and Brooks plays in King before the defender gets back. Richarlison and Aké go for a header and Aké goes over the top. Clyne ventures forward and almost catches Pickford out.Gosling tackles back well on Sigurdsson.

Bournemouth are playing first time balls Fraser and Gosling, now Smith and Smith is brought to ground and wins a free kick. It's Gueye again who fouled. Stanislas will fancy the shot from here on the edge of the box on 25 minutes. King and Fraser line up at the end of the wall.

Stanislas hits it low and Pickford just keeps it out low to his right for a corner. Lerma's shot hits Aké and Gosling fires well wide. Gosling over hits a pass but Pickford is caught out and Fraser puts a cross back in that King heads over.

Everton just haven't got going. But Bournemouth need a goal after all this dominance. Begovic gets to an Adam Smith back pass just in time. Thirty minutes gone and still nil-nil somehow.

Lookman puts in a cross and Bernard heads over from 15 yards. Brooks is fouled. This one can be chipped into the box. Fraser lobs it in but it's off Keane's head for a corner.Everton break, but Cook covers. Clyne makes an important clearance in front of Lookman. That was the first bit of pressure from Everton.

Lerma coms out with the ball and Stanislas puts the ball wide for Clyne who wins a corner on 36 minutes. Brook and Fraser puts a ball in that comes off a hand perhaps, but it's run to Pickford.

Coleman and Lookman on the ball before it's put out for an Everton corner. Lerma heads out. Lookman puts in a fast low cross and Bournemouth let the ball run through. Bernard is booked for a foul on Smith.

Digne's cross is too strong and goes out on the other wing. Coleman in space is blocked by Adam Smith for an Everton corner on 41 minutes. Digne chips the ball back in and Keane's header pops off the bar for a goal kick.

Lerma is penalised for a high challenge, but it looked like he was fouled. Clyne loses the ball. and Gosling fouls Richarlison who wins a free kick on the edge of the box.

Digne hits the wall and it's cleared by Fraser.Bernard into Sigurdsson on the edge of the box, but he has driven it wide. One minute of added time goes up. That's it half-time. Bournemouth had 43 per cent possession, seven shots and two shots on target with three corners.Everton have had eight shots but none on target and three corners.

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Second half
Everton make the first attack with Bernard on the left wing and Gomes shoots well over.  Sigurrdsson put a ball in the box and Bernard just sees it go over his head.  Corner now to Everton. Richarlison got a head to it and Aké has to clear a shot off the line from Richarlison! That was close.

Clyne does well against Bernard. Adam Smith is free with Fraser who gets a corner.  Steve Cook puts a free header on to the roof of the net. Stanislas wins another corner. Fraser put it wide for King, but the ball doesn't fall for Brooks. Zouma clears.

Aké makes a couple of clearances deep in his own half. Lerma blocks off Bernard and it is a surprise he is not booked.  The ball is volleyed over by Bernard. Richarlison is offside, running behind Aké.

Brooks plays in Stanisals but he is offside on 57 minutes. Great covering by Clyne, off his chest, as the ball swept across Bournemouth's box. Aké makes a header and Aké blocks for a corner, no penalty as it comes off Aké's arm.

The corner goes out to the left and King can't stop the cross by Digne and Kurt Zouma has a free header at the near post to score on 61 minutes - 1-0 to Everton. One mistake and Bournemouth are undone!

Lerma wins a foul. Not a lot of attacking options for Bournemouth on the bench. Fraser is taken out by Keane who will be booked, but King plays on and hist his shot wide of the goal.

Zouma fouls King and is booked. Gomes is also carded for preventing the restart. Everton are keeping possession and Fraser tackles Coleman well in the box for a goal kick.

Mousset is coming on and Stanislas is subbed on 68 minutes. Clyne heads a Sigurdsson cross away. Bournemouth get on the ball. Lerma holds off two Everton players.

Gomes almost sneaked in when Begovic was slow to come out. Gomes fouls Steve Cook. King wins a free kick near the corner post on 74 minutes. King is walking gingerly off. Fraser's free kick to the far post is headed but Pickford punches it off his line.

Bournemouth have a corner. with 15 minutes left. Aké's header is right at Pickford. Sigurdsson on the right crosses and Richarlison's stooping header goes wide of the right post.

Walcott comes on for Bernard on 78 minutes. Richarlison fouls and Bournemouth have a free kick. Fraser to Mousset and Gomes reads it. Clyne puts a ball out.

Brooks is subbed for Jordan Ibe. King is caught. Richarlison against Cook but the shot is over. Richarlison is booked for a foul on Steve Cook. Sic minutes left.

Gosling and Steve Cook fouls Lookman. Ibe down the right is tackled by Lookman. Calvert-Lewin replaced Richarlison on 88 minutes.

Mouseet to King and Fraser but Pickford comes out. Gosling on the left wins a free kick off Walcott. Gosling is limping. Fraser delivers and it's out to Mousset and Everton clear.

Ibe gets a foot in to stop an Everton breakaway. Free kick to Bournemouth. Adam Smith up to Aké, King is in there all very scrappy.  Ibe drives it in low and Keane clears off Mousset.

Mina is coming on. Five minutes of added time go up. Lerma, Mouseset and Gosling but Keane blocks him - corner. Mina is on for Sigurdsson on 90+2 minutes. The corner is cleared. Ibe crosses and Coleman puts it out for a corner.

Fraser takes it. Everton win it. Begovic hammers the ball back downfield. A long throw from Cook is flicked on and another corner. Pickford saves comfortably from Mousset. Everton down the left and Calvert-Lewin makes it 2-0, side foot, clips off Steve Cook and Begovic. It's a sixth successive away defeat for Bournemouth.
Everton head for the top 10 while AFCB look nervously below. 
Summary
Despite the scoreline, Bournemouth created the chances to win this game. Some will look to the fact that Wilson was not available, but Bournemouth had the game under control in the first half. They still conceded a poor goal giving Zouma too much space, but Begovic had little to do for most of the game. The final nail in the coffin was the breakaway goal at the end. Bournemouth didn't deserve that, as it was a much closer game than a 2-0 score line. Still, the Cherries didn't score when they should have and if Brooks' post shot had gone in and they had been given the penalty, it might easily have been a different day, because Everton didn't look comfortable for most of this game.

AFCB Subs
Brouc, Rico, Simpson, Daniels, Surman, Ibe, Mousset

AFCB Ratings: 
Begovic 5, Clyne 5, S Cook 5, Aké 7, A Smith 5, Brooks 7, Lerma 6, Gosling 5, Stanislas 5, Fraser 6, King 5

Cherry Chimes' MoM: Nathan Aké

Everton
Pickford, Coleman, Keane, Zouma, Digne, André Gomes, Gueye, Lookman, G Sigurdsson, Bernard,
Richarlison

Everton Subs
Stekelenburg, Mina, Walcott, Kenny, Davies, Tosun, Calvert-Lewin

Ref watch: Anthony Taylor 2/10 - wasn't a favourite with the Everton fans but he didn't have the courage to make the big decision when Brooks was fouled in the box.
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