Date: 26th September 2019 at 9:05am
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AFC Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe told the Daily Echo

“…It’s desperately disappointing, we are kicking ourselves – we know we are a lot better than that. It didn’t really show in the match.

“I think we lacked everything. We lacked quality on the ball, we lacked intensity off the ball, we lacked our usual swagger. Certainly, we will have a lot of reflection…”

“…We made the changes in the knowledge that the players we were playing were full of quality, Most of them have a lot of Premier League experience, so we can’t use that as an excuse…”

Written by adam0102

A Bitter Return to Burton

Well, that was fun. Not a match report per se, I can never remember as much detail as Neil, just some random musings and marks for the players.

Eddie named a team that, to be honest, excited me and that should have been more than strong enough to win this game. Put it this way, how many of our team tonight could Burton afford to buy?

A reasonable contingent of fans made their various ways to the East Midlands, probably about 500+ between the stand and the terrace, and the first five minutes showed enough neat touches and flair to get us optimistic.

But that was where it ended. We soon settled into playing triangles, quadrilaterals and various other mathematical shapes around the box, with Travers having about 80% possession. To be fair to him, Mepham and Simpson, all too often there was no out ball as Surman was just content being the fourth in the square and Lewis couldn’t get into the game at all. There was just as little movement down the wings, with Fraser and Ibe so peripheral they might have been in the front row of the stands, and Solanke had zero balls to do anything with.

Burton had more forward intent than us and it was no surprise when they scored after 15 minutes. Travers threw the ball 30 yards direct to one of their players, who slotted a ball past Franno (who, not unreasonably, wouldn’t have expected it to be coming back from a keeper’s throw….) from where it was crossed and smacked in at the far post, where Kelly, presumably, was not picking up the man. A catalogue of errors and a really poor goal to concede.

However, that meant that we would start to assert our authority, move the ball forward and start a goal fest……err, no, it just meant more triangles. For ten minutes at a time, we barely got out of our defensive third, with Burton’s players standing back in surprise at the little amount of running they were having to do. I swear that at one point I saw their keeper nip off for a pint and a pasty.

Half time came to a disillusioned shrug from the AFCB contingent. I think by that stage we all knew what was happening.

What we didn’t know was that the second half would be 73 minutes long, strangely enough exactly the same length of time that the first half had felt like. Harry Wilson came on as Eddie rang the first change. Ten minutes in the lights went out and everyone trooped off to jeers and songs about not paying electric bills. The announcer said we’d have to wait for things to cool for a few minutes before turning them on, and sure enough, eventually, the lights came back on and we were underway. Then it happened again, and people started querying how many times it needed to happen before we could get out of jail with an abandonment.

Back on came the lights one by one, and back on came the players to start again……and go off in darkness once more a few minutes later. We thought that was it. Jordon thought that was it because he came over, clapped the fans and gave his shirt to one of them. The media thought that was it. Many fans thought that was it and left.

We suddenly had hopes rising again of being in the draw, but after another fifteen-minute delay, when no announcements were made and nobody knew what was happening, the lights came back on and we finally finished the game. By that stage I was rapidly losing interest, which to be fair was only getting me to the level of most of the team. Callum and Danjuma came on, both looked lively to start with, but Callum faded as, like Solanke, he had no ball to work with. Danjuma was the one bright spot of the whole night, lively, quick, alert and looking to be positive. He looks a real find on the strength of a half-hour cameo.

They scored again, another defensive error. Travers made a great save, following another defensive error. The sum total of our chances were one for WeeMan in the first half from a Solanke pass (I think) which he should have buried, a Harry Wilson run through when he stumbled and a Simpson header against the post.

An utterly pathetic, inept and can’t-be-bothered display from virtually everyone. Nobody staked a claim to play against West Ham at the weekend.

Travers – 4 – Made a couple of good saves but was responsible for the first goal and also set the tempo by always passing five yards

Kelly – 2 – I know he was coming back from injury but I saw absolutely nothing positive. Pulled out of several challenges, gave the ball away and did little going forward

Simpson – 3 – Very poor, content to slow play down but was caught several times in a poor position and at one stage didn’t even bother to jump for a header

Mepham – 3 – Equally poor

Francis – 4 – Started OK, made a couple of good runs then faded away until subbed in the second half

Surman – 2 – Zero creativity, gave the ball away several times, and also on at least two occasions failed to spot Ibe in acres of space, preferring to pass five yards to a colleague who was being marked by two Burton players

Cook – 3 – Had a nightmare game, only getting an extra mark above Surman because he did at least look forward

Kilkenny – 1- Did absolutely nothing. So disappointed, I was really looking forward to seeing him but he might as well not have been there. Subbed at H/T

Fraser – 3 – Showed nothing in a game where he needed to show Eddie he was pushing to get his first-team slot back. If any of the “big 6” managers were watching, they won’t be ringing his agent in the morning

Ibe – 5 – at least tried to be positive, although had very little ball. Made a couple of good runs although still lacked end product

Solanke – 4 – Difficult to mark because he barely had a touch


Wilson (H) – 3 – Offered nothing and even delivery was below par

Wilson (c) – 5 – Looked lively when he came on and for the first ten minutes after that but faded as he received no service

Danjuma – 7 – Head and shoulders in front of everyone in terms of attitude, positivity and skill. Unfortunately, couldn’t do it by himself, and it was really frustrating to see him get into a good position and see NOBODY trying to support him.

MoM – Danjuma

Eddie – 3 – That team selection was fine. However, the overly defensive set up that didn’t alter can only be down to the manager. A bad day at the office, but worrying that he couldn’t change the mindset of the B team.

Summary – Horrible, a gutless performance that was an insult to all those who had made the trip

Your say…

Garbo wrote…

…pretty generous with some of those marks….it was a diabolical effort from a team of PL squad players against a determined But ordinary Burton side who deserved the win no doubts….- Join the conversation, click here.

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