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Defending is a fine art and one AFC Bournemouth are struggling with currently. Why? Perhaps Oulala’s latest Premier League stats have the answer.
According to the stats Charlie Daniels has committed six fouls in 20 appearances, Steve Cook eight fouls in 22 appearances and Nathan Ake has managed three in 10 appearances. That’s the fifth, eight and ninth cleanest defenders in the Premier League. Congratulations.
But, what does this actually mean? Our defenders are really good and every (or nearly) time they tackle they get it right and win the ball. Or, does it mean we are a bunch of lightweights and don’t like to get stuck in.
Who else is on the list and how are they doing? Man City has three players, with Swansea, Spurs, Watford, Boro and West Ham all having one. A decent spread from top to bottom of the Premier League. This tells us very little, what we need to look at is our defending. It’s been said many times and it’s easy to blame, but we have effectively had the same back four for three seasons. They have good spells and bad spells and when we are losing and conceding we are sh*t and need new defenders when we are winning it’s all forgotten. What happens if we beat Palace with a clean sheet? All is good again?