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First team

Howe - we have spirit and togetherness

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AFC Bournemouth AFC Bournemouth

Eddie Howe has praised his side’s mentality after Bournemouth achieved a 2-1 win over Crystal Palace at Vitality Stadium.

David Brooks got his first goal in a Bournemouth shirt to kick-off proceedings early on, but his strike was cancelled out by Patrick van Aanholt’s second-half equaliser.

The game was setup for another dramatic finale, and substitute Junior Stanislas made sure of the three points from the spot after Jefferson Lerma was brought down inside the box by Mamadou Sakho.

Following the win, Howe reflected on the following points…

The performance

“Our first half performance was really good, as was our end to the game, and we had to defend well at times. In my opinion, you could possibly say we shaded it and deserved to win. Roy Hodgson would probably say differently.

“They did well for spells of the second half and put us under pressure, but from my perspective I was very pleased with the mentality of the group, conceding the equaliser and then finding the strength to go again in search of the winner.

“We’re confident that we have a goal in us at any time, and match winners in the team who can turn a tight game in our favour. The most important thing for me is that the spirit and togetherness in the group is as strong as it’s ever been which is a huge quality to have.”

David Brooks’ start to the season

“Brooks has got outstanding technical qualities, and I believe he’s a goal-scorer in waiting. He gets in good positions, his finishing is improving, and his first goal here was a big moment for him. It was an excellent finish after a really good team move. He’s started really well in his time with us and the potential of his performances are huge. I’m very excited by what he could be in the future.

“I felt he deserved to start the season after his performances in pre-season, especially in the final pre-season friendly against Marseille. He’s stayed in the team on merit and hasn’t been overawed by being in the Premier League or phased by some of the players he’s playing with or against. He’s just attacked it and done his best, and that’s a special thing to do at such a young age.”

Junior Stanislas’ return from injury

“It was a tough moment for him, coming onto the pitch and being given a penalty without touching the ball. Without really feeling that you’re in the match, it’s not an easy thing to do to get the composure to finish it off, but he took it really well. It’s been a long journey back from injury for him so I’m very pleased.

We’ve got a number of penalty takers. Joshua King would probably say he has the right to take them as he’s taken the last few very well, but that’s a decision we have to make.

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