Monday, 28 April 2014

Mr Consistent can only get better

I have not looked at every club's player record this season, but I bet there are very few that have a player that has played in every minute of every fixture. Simon Francis is one player though who has the strength and performance levels that have made him a natural selection for Eddie Howe to go to at right back for every game in the 2013/14 season and I don't think he missed many last season either.
Simon Francis receives the Mick Cavey trophy.
In matches in his first Championship season Simon was found out a few times early on, as were some of his team mates at the back. But I suppose the big defeats though to Watford and Huddersfield did the team a lot of good in the end. They soon knew what the Championship was all about. Coming back from difficult games though is what Francis and others have done well. I still see that more can come from Francis in terms of his defending and positioning, but going forward he has been simply outstanding. He is powerful and yet a thoughtful player when he drives forward and always has his head up looking for the perfect cross or pass. He may over hit a few crosses and be so quick as to be ahead of play, but his enthusiasm to get forward is one of the signatures of Eddie Howe's team.

After this season Simon and others in the back four will have a much better idea of what to expect next time around and it should help them to be more consistent. But if you are talking of consistency Mr Francis has to be the player that embodies that at the club as he has been there for every minute of every game. To win the Echo's Micky Cave Trophy is just reward for his performances and appearances this season.

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