Gary O’Neil tells Bournemouth players to turn performances into points – ‘We’ve suffered’
Bournemouth boss Gary O’Neil wants his players to ensure that “points start to match the performances” in their upcoming fixtures.
The Cherries narrowly missed out on securing a draw against south coast rivals Brighton last weekend when Seagulls winger Kaoru Mitoma struck an 87th-minute winner.
Their previous game against Nottingham Forest saw Sam Surridge net a late goal to steal a point for the visitors, but O’Neil says he is working hard to rectify the problem.
“The performance against Nottingham Forest probably should have got us three points, and the performance from Brighton should have got us a minimum of one,” he told a press conference.
“We need to make sure that the points start to match the performances that we put in.
“There are things that we can do to make sure the chances of that increase and we’ve been making sure that we work with the boys on that this week.”
Bournemouth have had a difficult return to the Premier League this season and are currently 19th in the table, with their last win coming in November against fellow strugglers Everton.
They now face a difficult run of fixtures in the league, welcoming Newcastle to the Vitality Stadium on Saturday before coming up against Wolves, Manchester City, Arsenal and Liverpool, and O’Neil is hoping to see some improvement from his players.
“Injuries to key players have been a really tough one for us this season, that’s something that you can’t really legislate for,” O’Neil added.
“We’ve suffered a little bit but there’s big room for improvement now with players coming back from injury and new signings showing that they can affect the game.
“Eleven defeats in 14 is, obviously, not where we want it to be but we’re not quite at full tilt yet, we’re not quite going at full strength. There’s room for improvement and I expect to see some.
“I’m excited about the upcoming football matches with the players that we have returning, the new boys settling and the place that the lads are in.
“The ones that have been here longer are all in a good place at the moment. I’m excited for the run of games between now and the end of the season.”
Bournemouth will check on the fitness of Marcus Tavernier and Dominic Solanke ahead of the Newcastle game, but O’Neil also confirmed that goalkeeper Neto has been appointed club captain.
“I just feel Nets is an impressive person on and off the pitch,” O’Neil added.
“He’s got some real leadership qualities and since he’s come, I’ve been really impressed with how he is in and around the group.
“I feel Neto has some real good qualities that we’d be silly not to tap into. Especially with the transfer window and the players we’ve recruited, I think it will benefit us.”
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