AFC Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe has defended his team selection following a disappointing defeat to lower league opposition in the FA Cup.
AFC Bournemouth have become the first ever Premier League side to lose an FA Cup away match by three goals to a side from the third tier or lower, thanks to three goals from Steve Morison, Shaun Cummings and Shane Ferguson.
The Cherries had made 11 changes from the starting XI that had drawn with Arsenal 3-3 midweek.
Adam Federici returned in goal to replace Artur Boruc.
AFC Bournemouth captain Simon Francis was suspended and he was replaced at right back by development squad player Jordan Lee.
Brad Smith replaced Charlie Daniels at left back and Marc Wilson and Tyrone Mings, who had a combined playing time of 241 minutes thus far this season, came in for Steve Cook and Nathan Ake.
In midfield Andrew Surman was partnered with Emerson Hyndman, who had previously played just 2 minutes of EFL Cup football in the centre of midfield with Jordon Ibe and Marc Pugh on the wings.
Up front, Lewis Grabban made his first appearance since September alongside Lys Mousset, who was handed a chance to add to his 81 minutes of game time this season.
Howe told Sky Sports…
‘We are so stretched, the Premier League is such a demanding league, we feel we need our best players available for selection.
‘Marc Wilson has pulled his hamstring, so we’re a body down and if that had been a first-team player, that would have been really catastrophic. We tried to protect the players we had fit…’
‘…It’s a really difficult one. We’d love to win the FA Cup, we’d love to go as far as we can.
‘Previous years I have made changes and we have gone on some good runs. This is the first time we’ve suffered in the cup and it disappoints me immensely…’
I wish the FA Cup mattered now we are Prem.
As a kid and right up to 5 years ago, getting to the 3rd round was the highlight of the season. A big day of passion and excitement. Hopes of drawing a big club and giving it a go against their 1st team.
Being upset when Burnley beat Liverpool to deprive us of a day out.
The joy of beating Man Utd.
Liverpool in 68.
Knocking Newcastle out in a replay.
Many, many more.
Just brilliant memories which at our current lofty status seem far gone.
Of course, saving our PL status is priority, but when did the FA Cup just not matter unless your reserves got you to the Q/F, then they all get hoofed out for the 1st team to take over.
Right now, we just as well not enter. – Join the conversation here.
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