Bournemouth suffered a 2-0 home defeat against Manchester City on Monday night in the Premier League.
The defeat means that the Cherries are currently 14th place in the top-flight table and in massive danger of getting dragged into the relegation battle.
At just six points clear of the drop zone and with teams below them seemingly finding their form, the Cherries have to be prepared for a relegation battle, though.
Highly rated boss
If anybody is a regular reader of my editorials then no doubt they have probably read at least one article from me praising Eddie Howe. I rate the Cherries boss very highly.
The rookie boss comes across well in the media and he seems to talk sense in most of his interviews. The 39-year-old seems like an intelligent guy and is highly regarded in English football.
What he has done for Bournemouth has been extraordinary. Along with the club’s current hierarchy, they have pulled the club from near-extinction to the Premier League. What’s been even more impressive has been that Howe has not lost his football philosophy in the process of surviving in the top-flight.
His teams like to play attractive, passing, attacking football. That is how they won promotion and that is how they survived last season in the top-flight. Howe’s philosophy is admirable, but at the moment he may just need to tweak his thinking slightly.
Howe has recently defended his summer transfer dealings, as by the clubs standards they spent a lot of money. However, he is a young boss and even the best bosses make mistakes in the transfer market.
After what he has done for the club I am sure the fans forgive the Cherries boss a few mistakes now and then.
Conceding too many goals
As previously mentioned Howe may need to change his team’s system slightly to win more games. His team simply concede far too many goals. In fact, only Swansea have conceded more goals than Bournemouth’s tally of 49. The Cherries have the joint-second worst defence in the league alongside Hull City.
Their saving grace this season has been going forward, as only the top seven teams in the Premier League have scored more than the Cherries tally of 35. Howe’s side have scored just three less than Manchester United, who are sixth place in the table.
Howe must now adapt his side’s way of playing slightly or use different personnel in his backline. His sides defence has not been a settled one this season, largely due to injuries and suspensions.
However, even when Howe has had his first choice defence available the Cherries have struggled to keep clean sheets. I heard somebody describe Howe as the English version of Liverpool’s Jurgen Klopp, as his teams are good going forward, but poor in defence. I am sure the Cherries boss would be happy with a comparison to the former Dortmund boss.
Unlikely to be relegated this season
There is much to admire about Bournemouth as a football club. I for one hope that the Cherries are not relegated this season. It seems unlikely that the south coast club will be relegated. However, at the moment the Cherries are odds of 7/1 to finish in the bottom three this season.
Boss Eddie Howe has shown in the past, even last season, that he has enough managerial acumen to keep the Cherries in the Premier League. The club’s hierarchy recently gave the team’s boss a vote of confidence, despite a run of five defeats in their last seven top-flight games.
From what I have read very few fans are calling for Howe to be sacked. He has simply done too much for the club for the fans to produce a knee-jerk reaction.
However, between now and the end of the season Howe needs to prove just how good a manager he is and turn things around on the south coast or the fairy tale may have a very nasty ending.
Will Bournemouth get dragged into the relegation battle?
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