After some good recent results from Eddie Howe’s AFC Bournemouth side, they’ll be looking to continue their good run of form against Hull City at the Vitality Stadium this weekend.
Next week marks four years since Howe returned to AFC Bournemouth after leaving for his 18-month stint at Burnley. He’ll be looking to continue the South Coast sides positive run of form, which has seen the Cherries pick up 7 points from their last 4 games.
After a disappointing performance in a 4-0 defeat to Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City side, Howe’s men bounced back and secured two home victories against Everton and West Brom. A good performance in a 2-2 draw against Watford before the international break has meant that Bournemouth come into their next fixture against Hull with renewed confidence.
Hull City recently announced the permanent hiring of Mike Phelan as their manager. Phelan has worked as an assistant to Sir Alex Ferguson at Manchester United, and had a mixed spell at Norwich City as assistant coach and then caretaker manager for a brief period.
Howe was full of praise for Phelan in his pre match conference.
He said: “I think the most impressive thing about the job that Mike Phelan’s done in this short period of time is how he’s impacted their play. I think they play good football, they’re an attractive team to watch.”
The Cherries boss explained that his side were “under no illusions about the difficulty of the game.” and also revealed three injury problems sustained in the international break.
Despite Howe refusing to reveal the names of the affected players until after this weekend’s game, he did clarify that one of the injuries was of a long-term concern.
Howe said: “The reality is that players love playing for their country and rightly so, so from the players’ perspective they’re all keen to go and progress their careers.
“I have different thoughts because my job is solely this club and the only worry from my perspective when players leave here is how they’re going to come back and unfortunately this two-week period has been difficult for us.”
Marc Pugh remains unavailable for the Hull fixture because of a hamstring problem, and midfielder Harry Arter is also a doubt after sustaining a similar injury. With the addition of the three new side-lined players, Eddie Howe may be forced into changing the team that has proved so effective in recent weeks.
Hull City also have their own injury problems as striker Diemerci Mbokani and Michael Dawson will miss the showdown against the Cherries. After a drop in performances that has seen the Tigers lose four of their last five competitive fixtures, the now permanently-hired Phelan will be looking to put an end to his team’s poor run of form at the Vitality Stadium.