Saturday, 20 April 2019

AFCB need to see home form return

Eddie Howe is celebrating his 500th game as a manager, but he won't want it to be a defeat. Bournemouth have only won one match of their last five at home. The visit of Fulham perhaps gives Eddie Howe a chance to get the team working at their optimum before they face the bigger challenge of Spurs at Dean Court in a couple of week's time.
Eddie reaches the landmark of 500 games this weekend.

For now, the players have every reason to be confident and expectant of a good game against Fulham. While the attacking play was amazing in the second half against Brighton, the game was also characterised by a clean sheet for the Cherries. The return of Boruc to the team might not have meant that he needed to make more than one save, but his presence is important. Boruc will go level with Asmir Begovic on clean sheets of five if he can prevent Fulham from beating him. But Boruc will only have played 11 Premier League games compared to Begovic's 24. It is more than likely that Howe has miscalculated who his best goalkeeper is this season.

The return of Steve Cook was also a big point last game. He may have had to form a new partnership with Chris Mepham with Nathan AkΓ© moving out wide to the left, but it didn't bother Cook. It didn't look like he had needed any time to fit right back in. His desire to win is one of the factors AFCB have missed and he'll want a clean sheet as much as anyone.

While the forwards will take the glory for any goals they get, it is the defence that has been struggling with the quality of the Premier League this season. Eddie Howe needs to take a long look at what he is doing with the defence and the best players to have in those positions. 

This weekend, Bournemouth's quality up front will probably be too much for Fulham, but it is the lack of goals against that we should be most wanting in the remaining games. We know Bournemouth can play with tremendous counter-attacking quality, but can they stop teams from scoring against them better? The job starts against Fulham and a hopeful return of home form.

Possible AFCB team
AFCB Subs: Begovic, Clyne, Simpson, Ibe,  Stanislas, Mousset, Solanke

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