Friday, 22 July 2016

Tough pre-season schedule will test Cherries

This week the games have begun with a winning start in the match in the USA against Minnesotta United FC. It will be a relief to the players to finally get a match under their belt and the competitive nature of being in the US training camp has certainly galvanised team spirit. Now the fans want to see how that is going to develop on the pitch and the first chance us UK-based followers will get to see them over here comes up on Saturday of course against Pompey.

I find it is becoming almost a second ground for AFCB fans going to Fratton Park. It is a great old stadium though and I like mixing with their fans who are always accommodating and have long memories of yesteryear. 

The AFCB players have little time to recover after their long flight either and Pompey could well be playing the Cherries at a good time for them. They will be disappointed about not having gone up last season and they will need to gain momentum again. Beating an AFCB side has not been possible for them though in recent years, and I hope that the Cherries don't get complacent as they fully tested the side that was put out in the fourth round of the FA Cup for the Cherries. Sutton United gave Pompey an early taste of defeat this summer and AFCB will be looking to do the same.
Fratton Park is up next.
There is not so much AFCB connection with Pompey at the moment. Matt Tubbs moved on to Forest Green Rovers this summer but Danny Hollands is hopeful of a new contract with the club. 

Moving on to Reading on Friday 29th June provides another difficult game again and with the Cardiff friendly booked for the next day it gives Eddie Howe the chance to play and compare two different AFCB sides close together. Hopefully, Yann Kermorgant lines up against the Cherries at the Madejski stadium but we won't see Kenwyne Jones in the Cardiff game as he has moved to Atlanta United in the MLS, stateside.

The Valencia fixture will see AFCB face their stiffest competition in readiness for the Man Utd home match and I expect this fixture has been carefully picked to give the first team as harder game as they dare before taking on Mourinho's side. AFCB should be ready for that game when it comes along but they will have packed a lot in to during the previous month.


  1. 5 games two against league 2 standard and 2 against championship teams is not enough preparation for the new season, only tough game is valencia worried may be undercooked come august!!

  2. It is not the quality of teams that matter at this stage - it's getting minutes into the legs. Championship tams are high energy games and they are perfect for these warm ups.