Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Defensive worries for Howe

It is good to hear that Steve Cook has not broken his leg and it is ankle ligament damage that he has sustained. Still if it is expected that Steve Cook is not quite up to playing after the injury he picked up against Derby, it is possible that Eddie Howe could decide to look again going three at the back or keep it to the flat back four with different personnel. 

To lose the centre back pairing that has started most games for AFCB this season would be a massive blow, but it certainly looks like Elliott Ward is to spend a spell on the sidelines for sure with his calf injury. Tommy Elphick already filled in for Elliott Ward against Derby and you would imagine that he will be central to any plans Howe has for the next few games.
If Cook is absent against Brighton what would Eddie's plans be?
Elphick looks certain to start against the Seagulls.
I can't really see Eddie chosing to go three at the back against teams like QPR and Reading away, but it might be something he looks at for the Brighton home game. All the swapping and changing dd not really make a huge difference early on in the season though and the three at the back option appeared to be consigned to the training ground, but necessity may make it an option again.

AFCB fans will hope Cook recovers quickly.
Addison could have a surprise recall.
If a flat back four is retained we could see Miles Addison play his first match for the Cherries in the Championship. A friend of mine said there were rumours of Miles leaving the club but I have not heard anything in interviews or in the news. The former Derby defender will be eager to have some playing time as he has been out of contention for a place in the team for a long time.

I spotted also Joe Partington before the game on Saturday and while I am sure he will get an opportunity at some point, he has not been playing in the centre back position for long and has had very little game time to build strength back into his legs. Perhaps Stephen Purches has also called time on any ideas of playing for the first team in the Championship. Of course AFCB could look for another player in the loan market as well.

Whatever the case, we hope Steve Cook and Elliott Ward can recover quicker than is forecast. It just seems that AFCB are getting injury after injury at the moment and players are slow to recover. It must be a concern and Howe must be fed up with answering questions about who is fit and who isn't.

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