Date: 7th January 2015 at 8:43am
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AFC Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe has publicly backed Cherries midfielder Shaun MacDonald.

The midfielder hasn’t started a Championship match in well over a calendar year, with his last league start coming in the 3-0 away defeat to Queens Park Rangers on 3rd December 2013.

Since then he has made ten substitute appearances, all coming last season, totalling 149 minutes of league football.

This season his appearances have been solely limited to the cup competitions, with starts against Exeter and Cardiff in the League Cup and Rotherham United in the FA Cup.

Due to the strength in depth in central midfield, with MacDonald competing for a place alongside Arter, Surman, Gosling and O’Kane, MacDonald has regularly been linked with loan moves away from Dean Court.

Howe told the Daily Echo

“Potentially, some development squad players will go on loan to further their education but, in terms of the first-team squad, I don`t see anything happening imminently.

“We will wait and see how the window unfolds before making any decisions.

“Shaun has always been in the frame to play. With his technical ability and attitude, we have never, and would never, rule him out playing regularly in our first team.

‘The unfortunate thing for Shaun is that he is vying with the likes of Harry Arter, Andrew Surman, Eunan O`Kane and Dan Gosling to get involved and that is a very strong quartet of midfielders.”

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