AFC Bournemouth cruised through to the fourth round of the FA Cup with a comfortable 5-1 away victory against Championship rivals Rotherham United.
Cherries defender Steve Cook was the only first team regular named in the starting line up.
Despite Artur Boruc extending his loan at Dean Court, that deal was not concluded before the FA Cup registration deadline so Lee Camp coming back into the side was an enforced change.
Then in defence, Adam Smith replaced Simon Francis at right back, development squad defender Baily Cargill replaced captain Tommy Elphick at centre back and Ian Harte replaced Charlie Daniels at left back.
Eunan O’Kane, Dan Gosling and Shaun MacDonald made up a central midfield three, replacing the usual midfield partnership of Harry Arter and Andrew Surman.
On the wings, Ryan Fraser and Junior Stanislas replaced Matt Ritchie and Marc Pugh.
Up front, top goal scorer Callum Wilson was rested and Yann Kermorgant came into the starting line up.
The Cherries should have gone in front when Ian Harte’s free kick hit the cross bar and bounced over the line, however the officials failed to see it.
Within moments Rotherham had gone up the other end with a heavily deflected shot from Richard Brindley beating Camp.
The home side maintained their lead for the next 34 minutes, before Shaun MacDonald levelled just before half time.
Then inside 15 second half minutes, the Cherries took charge of the game with Stanislas, Fraser and a brace from Kermorgant all scoring to make it 5-1.
Howe told BBC Radio Solent…
“Naturally I think we took a little bit of time to come out of the blocks today, I don`t think we were totally happy with the early part of the game but we showed great character to respond to going a goal down.
“The guys that have played today haven`t played regularly week in week out, so to get that rhythm of match day was a little bit difficult for them but I think they showed second half that they are very good players, we have a very good squad.
“I had no problems rotating it today. It was an easy decision for me with the quality we have in the ranks.
“I thought Rotherham showed first half they can certainly play but I think the confidence came back when we scored the first goal really…’
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