Wednesday, 24 February 2016

Could AFCB's FA Cup back four line up stay together?

When I was looking out on the pitch at the back four the AFCB played against Everton in the cup I started to think this could be a back four that Eddie keeps in his mind to play. Sylvain Distin has been largely rested and used infrequently this season, but that may have been a plan so that he could be saved to have a big impact in the run in.
Sylvain get a run out.
When you see the experience of reading the game that Sylvain had it must be in Eddie's thoughts to play him in the upcoming big matches when nerve and experience are going to be required. Sylvain may have difficulty in staving off the very quick players, but he adds an authority to the back line that would grow if the Cherries can start to compile some clean sheets.
Tommy is ready to play.
It is a difficult decision for Eddie when looking at the centre back positions now. Tommy Elphick appears fit enough to play in the run in and yet Steve Cook has probably played more games with Distin than the captain has. Whatever Eddie decides it is likely that Simon Francis will now stay at right back where his dynamic runs up the wing have been a missing feature in the Cherries' games of late because he has had to cover at centre back.

At the start of the season though it was Elphick and Cook that Eddie was most keen on to play together and because they have such a long history and good understanding together I believe Eddie will opt for those two to carry the side through the remaining fixture list as long as they both stay injury free. That would be hard for Sylvain Distin having played so well against Everton, but someone will have to sit out and he could still find himself playing when an injury occurs. 

Later today on the Shoot blog I look at Eddie Howe trying to beat the drop.

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