Eddie Howe slammed Bournemouth’s inconsistency after seeing his side slip to a 2-0 defeat at Cardiff City and called for a response in their forthcoming clash with Premier League leaders Liverpool.
Goals at the start of either half from Cardiff forward Bobby Reid put paid to Howe’s hopes of going into the trip to Anfield on the back of three straight wins, following impressive victories over West Ham and Chelsea.
The Cherries followed up their 2-0 win over West Ham by beating Chelsea 4-0 at Vitality Stadium on Wednesday but Howe pointed to a lack of energy and aggression at Cardiff City Stadium.
“We go to Liverpool. We’ve got a tough fixture list around the corner,” Howe told BBC Radio Solent. “We definitely wanted momentum going into that. We haven’t got it.
— AFC Bournemouth (@afcbournemouth) February 2, 2019
“We definitely want a positive response to this performance.
“Very deflated because we feel we’ve missed a real opportunity. There was no real bite or the usual zip you see in the team.
“After the high of Wednesday we were unrecognisable and that’s a tough one to deal with.
“We were toothless with the ball, we didn’t get behind their back line until very late in the game, and the goals we conceded left a feeling that really summed the performance up.”
Howe was without injured midfielder David Brooks and striker Callum Wilson at Cardiff, but refused to use their absence as an excuse for the result.
“Of course you’re going to miss players with the quality of David Brooks and Callum Wilson be we have a squad good enough – as we showed on Wednesday – to cover that,” he said.
“Wherever you play you want to see an identity and get the result everyone wants, but whether it was the occasion, the atmosphere, or the fact that Wednesday took a lot out of the players, I don’t know – maybe a combination of the different factors.
“I don’t think it’s psychological. I think the big problem for us is inconsistencies. Inconsistency in performance leads to inconsistency in results whether it’s home or away.
“Until we iron that out and become more resolute and resistant in games we’ll never become the team we want to be.”
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