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All the latest AFC Bournemouth team news ahead of Stoke City clash



AFC Bournemouth have no fresh injury concerns going into Tuesday night’s clash against Stoke City at the bet365 Stadium, in what could be a potentially crucial tie in their quest to establish themselves as favourites for the Championship title.

Despite being away with Colombia on international duty, Jefferson Lerma didn’t play against Ecuador on Thursday night and was therefore fit enough to claim a place on the bench at the weekend, even managing to get on for half an hour against Bristol City.

The return of Junior Stanislas from his hamstring injury was a boost at Ashton Gate on Saturday afternoon, with the 31-year-old also able to get on the pitch and could possibly be ready to start for Scott Parker’s men if called upon.

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Two men who didn’t make the bench against Nigel Pearson’s side were Steve Cook and Lewis Cook, with both recovering from severe injuries and likely to be eased back into action when they’re fully ready to return to Championship action.

They started together in the Premier League cup against Arsenal just under a fortnight ago, so it won’t be long before they come back into the fold.

However, the former is unlikely to claim a spot in the starting lineup at this moment in time, with Gary Cahill and Lloyd Kelly forming a formidable partnership at the heart of defence and Chris Mepham available as an alternative.

He would be most likely to replace Leif Davis in the matchday squad as things stand, although Parker may crave an orthodox full-back option on the bench.

Meanwhile, the latter will also have a fight on his hands if he wants to regain his status as a key player for the Cherries, especially considering it will take him a while to get back up to speed after suffering an anterior crucial ligament injury.

With Lerma only just coming back from international duty, Gavin Kilkenny was tasked with winning the midfield battle alongside the likes of Philip Billing and Ryan Christie.

The south-coast side’s manager singled out the 21-year-old Irishman as being the ‘glue’ of the team, performing admirably and showing maturity way beyond his years, so he could retain his place ahead of Lerma for the midweek tie against Michael O’Neill’s men.

Ben Pearson is also in contention to return to the matchday squad after serving his one-match suspension for picking up five yellow cards, although it remains to be seen whether Adam Smith will return after sustaining a knee injury that kept him out of Saturday’s tie. Parker says he is ‘hopeful’ he can return.

And, of course, David Brooks misses out as he prepares to undergo treatment for stage two Hodgkin lymphoma. We wish him all the best in his recovery.

A 21-year-old Reading FC fan and writer who graduated from the University for the Creative Arts in the summer with a degree in Journalism and Media Production. Other topics written about include politics, mental health and education.

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: All the latest AFC Bournemouth team news ahead of Stoke City clash

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