Bournemouth at OKBet Football
Adrian Clarke examines how the Cherries have recovered following a management change at AFC Bournemouth.
O’Neil, Gary (BOU)
Interim head coach O’Neil has instilled new hope in an AFC Bournemouth club that has rebounded following Scott Parker’s departure. O’Neil has revamped the formation and established a more aggressive, attack-minded approach in his maiden managerial position, guiding the Cherries to a three-match undefeated run and receiving a nomination for September’s Barclays Manager of the Month award at OKBet Football 2022.
Following a goalless draw at home to Wolverhampton Wanderers at OKBet Football 2022, O’Neil’s tactical changes prompted a remarkable 3-2 comeback victory at Nottingham Forest, while Newcastle United manager Eddie Howe complimented his previous team as “very well coached” following a 1-1 draw.
Making difficult choices
O’Neil has not shied away from making difficult choices. Former Portsmouth player Mark Travers was replaced as first-choice goalkeeper by summer newcomer Neto on OKBet Football 2022. The Brazilian preserved a clean sheet on his Premier League debut against Wolves and then produced a series of saves against Newcastle to enable the Cherries secure another point. Neto has a save ratio of 76.9 percent, while Travers has a save ratio of 44.8 percent.
The 33-year-old from Barcelona has also shown greater dominance inside the ring, making more catches and punches than Travers, thoroughly supporting O’Neil’s decision. O’Neil has also called up offensive midfielder Philip Billing, who scored 10 Championship goals during the club’s promotion season in 2021/22.
Billing has reacted well, scoring in three consecutive games and been nominated for September’s EA SPORTS Player of the Month award OKBet Football 2022.
Billing’s goal against Newcastle
O’Neil instantly switched from Parker’s defensive 5-4-1 configuration to 4-2-3-1. However, in all three meetings, he has opted to switch to a back three in the second half. The fundamental difference with that pattern is that the players are pressing higher up, creating a more attacking 3-4-2-1 shape on OKBet Football 2022. O’Neil’s tactical adjustment helped his team come back from a 2-0 deficit to win at Forest. It was clear in that game how much he pushed his midfielders and wing-backs to take risks by running into forward zones. The statistics below show that AFC Bournemouth have been more daring in attack following the move at OKBet Football 2022.
BOU has touches in the opponent’s box.
When Billing converted against Newcastle in their most recent match, five Cherries players were within the penalty area at OKBet Football 2022. O’Neil has relaxed his players’ guard and given them the confidence to go after their opponents.
AFC Bournemouth may have had the fewest shots in the league, but they are a fit, hardworking team that has outlasted each of its seven opponents. Nonetheless, O’Neil’s arrival has resulted in a huge increase in the distance travelled by the players every 90 minutes.
22/23 BOU distance traveled (km)
Following their 9-0 loss at Liverpool, AFC Bournemouth players ran an additional 7.5 kilometers in their following home match against Wolves, totaling 115.4 kilometers. That was O’Neil’s debut match, and the squad has since recorded their second and third-highest distance traveled statistics in the following two outings. Because of the more forward runners, they are providing a greater goal threat, and their combined effort has resulted in a more tight defensive structure.
So far, O’Neil’s efforts have been pretty outstanding.
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