AFC Bournemouth have never been known as a defence-minded side.
During both spells under manager Eddie Howe, a former England Under 21’s centre back, the defence has always been sacrificed for attacking intent.
“We play from the back, with pace in attack” has been the song from the terraces since Howe’s return to Dean Court in 2012, which saw a 6 month turn around from relegation places in the third tier of English football to promotion.
The philosophy hasn’t changed, from early day heavy defeats in the Championship, through to that promotion-winning side and now fast forward into the fifth season in the Premier League.
With Saturday’s victory over Manchester United, the Cherries moved into seventh place in the top flight of English football. 16 points from the opening 11 games and remarkably on a positive goal difference.
The defensive side of AFC Bournemouth’s game has improved, this season, with the Cherries having now goal 351 minutes without conceding a goal.
AFC Bournemouth captain Steve Cook has been immense in recent weeks, looking like he is now fully recovered from an injury which hampered his pre-season preparations.
The emergence of Aaron Ramsdale from League One hero whilst on loan at AFC Wimbledon last season, to fully-fledged and confident Premier League goalkeeper has also played its part.
Both men have earned to be in contention for an England call-up in many peoples view and they could well answer a few questions that England manager Gareth Southgate has been attempting to answer.
3 points, clean sheet! Perfect day???????????? pic.twitter.com/q7nrG7YRZ9
— Nathan Aké (@NathanAke) November 2, 2019
What a performance from @SteveCook28 yesterday ????
More clearances (9) & more passes (41) than any other Bournemouth player ???? He also gained possession six times and conceded just one foul
— BBC Solent Sport (@solentsport) November 3, 2019
AFC Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe told the Daily Echo…
“I was really pleased with the defensive performance, Steve Cook and Nathan Ake first and foremost gave us the foundation for that win, I think…”
“…The two full-backs (Adam Smith and Diego Rico) had their hands full with the pace of their two wingers and I thought they did really well.
“Aaron (Ramsdale) when called upon made a couple of great saves at the end.
“Defensively we are moving in the right direction with the three clean sheets. We still have work to do.”
3 clean sheets in a row
Is this a first for us in the Premier League?
Cook and Ake were absolute rocks today.
Smith has been excellent since he came back from injury and as I’ve previously mentioned Rico is a completely different player to last a season. Kelly will be waiting for a start until the FA Cup at this rate.
Billing and Lerma tracking back and complimenting the defence brilliantly also.
And as for Rambo – what can you say? The lad is already a legend and he’s only played 11 games for us. Absolutely genius move to make him our No 1.
England should be coming knocking for Cook and Ramsdale imminently – Join the conversation, click here.