Tuesday, 22 November 2016

First away win for AFCB - they did enough things right

It was a tough victory away at Stoke City. The team had to dig really deep to keep the Potters out in the last 20 minutes and while Mark Hughes disliked the way that AFCBs's players looked to slow the game down, and stall for time, when making subs or having players down, it is nothing that Stoke City wouldn't have done themselves if they were in the same position.

I was delighted with the fact that the lads held out. Against Crystal Palace it was not such a good outcome, but perhaps the team is learning that they have to be brave in that last 20 minutes to hold out in such games. There were moments when hearts were in mouths though, like the Shaqiri chance that he blasted over the bar and the header from Jonathan Walters that was directed right at Federici in the last few minutes, as well as the goal line clearance from Arter. So Stoke City had moments to get something from the game, even without the missed penalty but, like Eddie Howe, I felt it was a deserved win. AFCB were so dominant in that first half and should have been two or three to the good had Roger East been a little fairer with his decisions shall we say.
It was a hard game to close out but AFCB used their heads to frustrate Stoke City.
While the Cherries have still found goals hard to come by, they defended extremely well under a great deal of second half pressure. The sight of Peter Crouch coming on and Jonathan Walters who so often snatches goals was a big test for AFCB's defenders, but they were not distracted. I thought Callum Wilson was lucky not to pick up a card for the way he came off the pitch when being subbed, but it did put a smile on my face. He enjoyed it too, clapping the fans and taking his time to get to Afobe who was waiting to come on.
At times it wasn't pretty. AFCB were perhaps running out of steam at the end, but it was good to see Marc Pugh get a run out and Adam Federici will just be glad to have ended his long wait to play his part on the pitch - he made some very important saves - even if they were ones he would have expected to save.   

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