Sunday, 31 January 2016

Iturbe is starting to see what he needs to deliver

Much of the eyes at Fratton Park were directed on Juan Iturbe. The Argentine play maker has had a tricky introduction to English football and getting him up to pace maybe the coaching squad's mist challenging task this next couple of months. There is pressure on Juan and on the staff to make this loan move a good one and while there is much work to be done we could see that there is potential in Juan to be that star player that AFCB want to deliver to the Premier League.
Juan looked a much better prospect at Portsmouth on Saturday.
Juan was propelled into the cup tie against Pompey in what would be a real test of his fitness and also his aptitude for getting stuck in and holding his own against a side that were not going to give him space or be afraid to put in a tackle or two. To his credit Juan quickly found the pace of the game and much of the Cherries' early good work came through him. He was the sparkle in what was a subdued first half from AFCB.

The moment that almost saw Juan get his first goal for AFCB was a heads up on Juan's technique and quality when he is given a bit of space. Standing on the edge of the penalty box he shifted his feet quickly and hit a very fast shot that had to be saved. It is a shame that it hot the post rather that found the bottom corner but you have to give the keeper the credit for that.

It was other parts of Juan's game though that took me a bit by surprise. He was winning headers, holding the ball up and really taking the fight to Pompey. It was a change from what we saw in his first game against West Ham. Yes, it was a lower level game but I just think this was more like the Juan Iturbe performance that has probably been seen in training and if so then it won't be long before he is pushing for a place in the team. He can track back and he does not hide from the ball. I have big hopes for him and if he can get a few games in the cup as well as coming on in the league matches he could soon start to find his song is sung a little more often from the stands.

The Cherry Chimes Newsletter will be out tomorrow.
Cherry Chimes' February Newsletter  brings you the best stories on the blog and the thoughts behind them from last month, plus there is a special Newsletter article entitled: Can Grabban be even better second time around?

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