Date: 24th May 2021 at 10:02am
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AFC Bournemouth travelled to London with a 1-0 lead over Brentford following the first leg at Dean Court.

The Cherries knew they were just 90 minutes away from the Championship Play-Off Final, the richest game in world football, with a place in the Premier League at stake.

Unfortunately due to injury, AFC Bournemouth were missing captain Steve Cook, he was replaced by Chris Mepham at the heart of the Cherries defence, alongside Cameron Carter-Vickers and full-backs Adam Smith and Lloyd Kelly.

Goalkeeper Asmir Begovic was handed the captain’s armband.

In midfield, Ben Pearson’s hip injury didn’t prove to be as bad as first feared as he maintained his place in the side alongside Jefferson Lerma. The front four of Philip Billing, Arnaut Danjuma, David Brooks and Dominic Solanke continued.

Man of the match against Brentford

Rico

Rico

Danjuma

Danjuma

Solanke

Solanke

Carter-Vickers

Carter-Vickers

Following the game, AFC Bournemouth head-coach Jonathan Woodgate was asked by Sky Sports for his reaction and where he stands with his contract at Dean Court now expiring…

“I’m absolutely devastated, to be honest, the players are as well. But I can’t for the life of me see how he’s given a penalty – it hit his thigh then his hand. I thought the fans got on top of the referee, and their coaching staff did. Honestly, it’s beyond me how he gives it.

“That changes the game, then we make an error with the red card and it’s difficult enough playing here with 11 men, let alone 10 men. It’s been a crazy few months. At the end of the day, it [extending his contract] is not my decision.”

adam0102 wrote…

I never felt we’d get through with only a 1-0 lead, and even at 2-0 I said it was too early, so I’m not particularly shocked we lost.

Should never have been in that position, though. Our failure to take points from the bottom four sums up the problems in this squad.

I’m also a bit worried about next season. However, I can’t wait to be there to see us play again come August.

stanthevanΒ  wrote…

I’m philosophical. I love the championship and with fans back next season (hopefully), we have some great grounds to visit. We’re in a league we’ve spent most of our history trying to get into. Be thankful for that.

NWCherries98 wrote…

I don’t know enough about the financial situation to comment, but I’d be lying if I said that I’m not worried about the immediate and long term future of the club. Have no faith in the board or any of the higher-ups. Very hopeful that we can assemble a competitive squad for next season.

Ivyhouse wrote…

A bit disappointed that we will never know how good this team could be but need to look forward now. I hope whoever takes over from Woodgate will be allowed to build a team in their own image, a bit like Eddie did, and get a group of guys together who want to play for the badge, for each other and for us. I’m not convinced that most of this current bunch had that in them.
Good luck to those who move on. At least you stuck around unlike some who will remain nameless.

Red_Dez wrote…

It’s the hope that kills you.

Went into the playoffs thinking we had blown our best opportunity as we would struggle against Brentford over 2 legs and would have been better off playing them in the final.
Met them head-on in both legs, so we did better than I expected and the annoying thing is I think we would be in the final now if Mepham was actually an 11million pound centreback – ironic that Woody got the rest of the team to give him an ovation in the dressing room after the first leg.

We would have been better off letting their player run through, 11 v 11 we always had another goal in us.

Now we have to see what happens to the management and squad over the summer before any bold predictions for next season. – Join the conversation, click here.

 
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