It could not have been a much better start to the season for AFC Bournemouth than what they have managed to enjoy so far under Scott Parker and they are in an excellent position at the moment.
Parker’s side would have been frustrated to see their 15 game unbeaten run at the start of the season brought to an end by Preston North End. However, the Cherries managed to bounce back from that first setback very quickly with an impressive 4-0 victory against Swansea City last time out.
The Cherries remain top of the Championship table, although their lead was cut down to just two points by Fulham when Bournemouth lost against Preston.
Parker’s side are though eight points clear of third-place West Brom and that is a sizeable gap to have opened up after just 17 matches of the season.
It is going to be vital that Parker’s side try and maintain their form when the campaign resumes because the next stretch of matches through to the festive period could help to set them up for a clear run to promotion. However, they will have to show that they can continue to respond to setbacks as well as they did following the Preston loss.
So, with Bournemouth enjoying a well-earned rest over the international break, we take a look at some of the latest news concerning the Cherries…
Parker urges Phillip Billing to continue to improve and focus on Bournemouth amid Denmark snub
Despite enjoying a strong start to the season in the Championship in terms of his personal form, Phillip Billing has been once again unable to force his way into Denmark’s squad for their forthcoming matches during the international break. That means the midfielder will again be denied the chance to add to his one cap for his nation to date.
Billing has been able to register six goals and three assists in his 16 Championship appearances so far this term for the Cherries. That means he is just two goals shy of the eight that he managed in the entirety of last term.
Parker has spoken to the Bournemouth Daily Echo about the latest snub from Denmark to Billing. He insisted that the midfielder needs to continue to improve his consistency and not to drift in and out of matches as he has done at times this season. However, he also backed him to continue to grow as a player under his management.
The Bournemouth manager also insisted that Billing needs to maintain his sole attention on his performances for the Cherries and not be distracted by the prospect of earning back a place within the Denmark squad.
Jack Stacey lauds Lewis Cook’s mentality after second long-term injury return
Bournemouth defender Jack Stacey has hailed Lewis Cook for the mentality that he has shown to recover so quickly from a second serious injury and get back on the field.
Cook had not been able to play a single minute for Bournemouth in the league since he ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee during the Cherries’ clash with Preston North End back in March. That was the second time he had suffered such a long-term injury issue during his time with the club.
However, Cook provided a major boost for Bournemouth when he came off the bench for his appearance since that injury against Preston in the Cherries’ 4-0 win against Swansea before the international break.
Speaking to the Bournemouth Daily Echo, Stacey has insisted that Cook’s return is going to be crucial for the Cherries with them having missed his technical quality in the middle of the park.
While the defender also praised his mentality for being able to keep going in his recovery over the last few months.