Thursday, 14 August 2014

Keep a lid on it - the Cherries are looking strong

It's easy to get carried away with one good performance. AFCB's first league match of the season though resonated right across the Championship with them scoring four goals away from home. Some will say that Huddersfield just had an off day, but I disagree. There was more to it than that and it does not credit AFCB with a strong performance if you just say Huddersfield were poor. I have always felt that Huddersfield will be a mid-placed team this season. However, I felt sad for Mark Robins on Sunday morning though as I heard that he had left Huddersfield Town. Nobody likes to see someone lose their job and on the first day of the season seems particularly harsh. If Robins was not the man for the Terriers I would have thought he could have been released at the end of last season, not after a summer of preparations and a first day defeat, but that is something for Huddersfield fans to consider.
Harry Arter and Yann Kermorgant do some stretching.
It is clear though that AFCB dominated for large periods of the game without playing at their very best in my opinion. There is room for improvement and Huddersfield did not look like they would get many good chances to sneak a goal and that is what makes AFCB a different prospect to last season if they can continue in that fashion.

I have been questioning about the decision not to being in a new central defender to add to the squad, but I can see that the more time Howe and Tindall have with the current players at the back the better they seem to understand what is needed to keep a clean sheet. They held their line so much better than in many games that I saw last season. The defending was stout and strong in front of the back four as well. Howe was perhaps surprising for his selection of both O'Kane and Arter starting having played Gosling in many of the pre-season friendlies. The choice was a good one as Arter and O'Kane know each others game so well, and it could have been less of a solid performance if some of the new players still have to find the level of understanding that the players from last season and before have already built up.

Callum Wilson of course looks like a real predator up front, perhaps even more so than Lewis Grabban. To be honest though, we can really see goals all over the team which is very encouraging. The team has the bit between its teeth but how long can it keep that desire and intent up for? That's what we will find out over the coming months. Eddie Howe is right to keep things steady and calm down any hype, but AFCB certainly have the shape and purpose about them that will see them as contenders for the top places in the Championship if they can sustain the levels they reached in their first away game.

Last night the Capital One Cup second round draw took place and AFCB will be taking on Northampton Town at Dean Court on Wednesday 27 August.

1 comment:

  1. Without wishing to jinx anything etc I would say our squad has three key components that fill me with more hope than I should probably have for our season.

    Firstly as you mentioned above we have a team full of goals waiting to happen, bar maybe the GKs everyone in our 22 this year will likely score at least one, our midfield in particular I think will add more than last year and I agree with your points on Wilson.

    Secondly our depth, the strength in depth we have this year is almost ridiculous! Plenty of cover should injuries start to become a problem and when the games start coming thick and fast we'll have plenty of options to rotate to keep fresh.

    Finally we've kept our team pretty much together so far, we showed in the later part of the season that this is a great Championship side and we've once again kept that team spirit etc together. The lads will have learned from last year and be better players this year.

    Not to mention we have in my honest opinion the one of the best English managers certainly of my lifetime in EH.

    I am struggling not to get carried away expectation wise this year!