Jamal Lowe has claimed that last year’s play-off disappointment is fuelling Bournemouth’s push for automatic promotion.
The Cherries were eliminated from the end of season shootout by Swansea City last season, falling just short of a shot at a Premier League place.
But now the side face two crunch clashes to earn a place inside the top two places in the Championship table for this campaign.
Tuesday night sees Scott Parker’s side take on Nottingham Forest, where a win or draw would put the team in a prime position to earn automatic promotion.
However, defeat would hand the initiative to their opponents, with the Reds only three points behind in the table.
Lowe has insisted that last year’s disappointment is fuelling the team’s commitment to gaining a result on Tuesday night to ensure the club will not have to worry about the play-offs again.
“It was probably one of the most devastating things that’s happened to me on a football pitch, getting so close, 90 minutes away from Premier League football and not making it,” said Lowe, via the Bournemouth Echo.
“That’s definitely given me the fire to push on and Bournemouth as well, you can’t forget, got to the semi-finals last season and that fire as well.
“Everyone has got the same fire to do one better this year.”
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Bournemouth lead Forest by three points but have an inferior goal difference so avoiding defeat will be crucial to their promotion chances.
However, Forest have the momentum going into the tie that was originally scheduled to take place in February.
Steve Cooper’s side have won their last four league games in a row to close the gap to be right Bournemouth in the table.
The disappointment of Swansea last season should be motivation for getting some result on Tuesday.
But it cannot hang over the team too much otherwise they risk repeating the mistakes of 12 months ago.
Forest are in fine form and will be difficult to stop on Tuesday night.
If Bournemouth want to secure promotion then they will have to do it the hard way by claiming even just a draw against the division’s in-form side.