AFC Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe has confessed that he will rethink his defensive strategy when it comes to set-pieces.
Both goals conceded by the Cherries against Watford came from set-plays.
Watford’s second from Troy Deeney, was AFC Bournemouth’s 39th goal conceded this season and 17th at Dean Court, ranking the Cherries with the fifth worst defensive record in the Premier League overall and at home.
In comparison, Benik Afobe’s equaliser was the Cherries 32nd goal of the season and 21st at Dean Court, ranking the Cherries with the 8th best overall attack in the top flight and fifth best goalscorers at home.
Howe told the Daily Echo…
‘…I felt we should have done better on both goals (conceded against Watford). When you give cheap ones away like that, it makes it all the more frustrating given how hard we had to work for ours.
‘Our goals I felt were of real quality, so it’s tough to take.
‘It’s not just the defenders. When you are defending a set-piece your strikers and midfielders are coming back, so without analysing the goals too much, it’s a team effort to defend a corner and we didn’t do it well enough as a team.
‘You can imagine with the type of drills we do in training, of course we focus on set-pieces and consider ourselves a really well organised team, so we will have to rethink our strategy on that.’
Neil Dawson wrote…
Your best heading players pick up their best. The problem we have is Deeney is not one of their best headers of the ball. Cook and Mings would pick up their two centre halfs, that still left us to pick up the guy that scored, Kabul and Capoue all of which are more dangerous in the air than Deeney. Daniels and King our are next two best headers (worrying I know), then Surman so they would have picked up them. Probably next best is Smith hence he takes Deeney, mismatched I know, but Deeney doesn’t score many headers from set pieces (until marked by someone like Smith).
Our problem is we don’t have many thou shalt never pass defenders. Cook is our only one and he is not the tallest. Any other time we will have three attack minded full backs fulfilling the other three positions. None of them are pure defenders. We also, unless Gosling and/or Afobe play, have the least amount of players available to naturally defend a set piece I’ ve ever seen in a team. Even O’Driscoll had Fletch to lead the assault on the ball into our box.
The only way you can fix this is in the transfer market. For two years we have needed a couple of pure defenders…until we stop throwing all our money into wingers and forwards we don’t need and sign some defenders we will be forever having this debate and our team and Howe will fall short of their incredible potential. – Join the conversation here.
It’s easy to join AFCB Vital
Sign up and have your say on the articles, polls and forums, just click the link to register.