Wednesday, 7 August 2013

Was it a clever move to leave Elphick on the bench?

It is very hard to second guess Eddie Howe. He has many plans and options in his head and knows exactly how all the players are performing at any moment in time. Tommy Elphick was one player to miss out last Saturday, but how much was it down to fitness and performance?

We will never know. Still, I suspect that if Eddie thought that Tommy was just a bit off his game it was a wise move to leave the captain out. In hindsight it was not a bad decision. AFCB won the game against Charlton. But I wonder whether Eddie also saw the value of the surprise decision having an impact on the rest of the players. If Eddie is willing to drop the captain then he is willing to leave anyone out of the team.

Elphick will be keen to win back his place.
If the players were not already giving 110 per cent they certainly would be after that. It seems we also have a few more leaders now. While Francis to the captain's arm band, the Cherries also had Steve Cook and Elliott Ward as centre backs with the ability to be leaders. I don't think Tommy will miss many games this season, but it was a key decision that no one expected and I am sure it has had an impact.

Tommy will be a key player for us and he will lead by example. That means that the other centre backs are really going to be scrapping it our for a place in the team and if we do go to three at the back at some point we may see two centre backs on the bench.

Well, this seems to be Eddie's game - keep us guessing. He is so good at it.

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