EPL

Andoni Iraola admits he has to prove his reputation as Bournemouth struggle

By Sports Desk October 07, 2023

Bournemouth head coach Andoni Iraola admits it is worrying already being in the bottom three and accepts a winless start to the season means he has “not done his homework”.

The 3-0 defeat at Everton leaves the Cherries without a victory in eight matches, their worst start to a league season since the 1994-95 campaign in the third tier when they picked up just a point from the same number of games.

Blame cannot all be placed at Iraola’s door, with the club’s record run without a win now stretching to 12 matches, but having been brought in this summer to replace Gary O’Neil – the man who kept them up against the odds – the responsibility is with the man from the Basque country.

“When you are in the relegation spots like we are now we have to be worried,” he said.

“You talk about the good reputation (he has) but I have to show it. The only thing you can do is start with yourself.

“We haven’t won games so I’m not doing my homework but I feel like players are pushing and are really disappointed and I am more than happy to coach the players I have here.

“We are conceding too easy goals and they are taking us from the games. We have to keep the concentration for 100 minutes otherwise it is very difficult.

“I think the first goal took a little bit of confidence, especially in the build-up.

“It is too easy a goal to concede and it was key today because it gives them confidence and momentum.

“When you are facing this type of game it is very important you start well. The way we conceded, especially the first goal, it turned things around.”

The first goal was unusual, coming as early as it did in just the eighth minute from James Garner, but what was really rare was that it was added to by Jack Harrison on his full home debut and Abdoulaye Doucoure – who scored the goal against Bournemouth back in May which kept Everton in the Premier League.

It was the first time since October 22 last year that the Toffees had scored more than once at home and brought a first Goodison win of the season.

After a number of encouraging but fruitless performances at home, manager Sean Dyche was pleased to at last get one over the line and comfortably so.

“I’m not saying it is a complete performance but it is a very good one and certainly a winning performance,” he said after a third win in four matches in all competitions.

“The signs have been there all season. The first game of the season we dominated proceedings, dominated chances and we just didn’t win.

“It’s about winning; the more you win the more people smile. The difference is when we win the noise changes.

“They were very good against Luton (despite losing 2-1 last weekend) and I have to see through the noise and remind the players of good performances.

“But also remind them good performances mean nothing unless you win.

“You can carry on with good performances all season but if you don’t win people lose faith in good performances.

“That just rubber-stamps another good performance by getting the win with another dominant performance.

“The xG (at three-plus) is as high as it’s been in the last eight years but you have to capitalise on it.

“Today we didn’t wait for it to happen, we stepped up and made it happen and that has to be a mindset that continues.

“It is not easy but that us is one we want to keep growing.”

Related items

  • Dele Alli ‘overwhelmed’ by support after revealing mental health struggles Dele Alli ‘overwhelmed’ by support after revealing mental health struggles

    Everton forward Dele Alli admits he was “overwhelmed” by the response to his emotional interview in which he confronted mental health issues relating to his troubled childhood.

    Last summer the 28-year-old revealed he had been sexually abused as a six-year-old and fell into selling drugs aged just eight, leading to psychological problems later in life. He also opened up about a sleeping pill addiction which led to a stay at a rehab clinic.

    “When I did the interview I said if I helped one person that’s all I needed,” Alli, speaking publicly for the first time since that interview, told Monday Night Football on Sky Sports.

    “I had to do it for my own reasons, but if it helped one person that is all I wanted from it and the reaction and support I got was definitely overwhelming.

    “But it was amazing to see how many people it did help and I’m definitely very proud of it.”

    Alli said going public with his problems was part of a process that has enabled him to learn important lessons about himself, which have in turn helped him through a testing period of injury.

    He has not played since a loan spell at Besiktas was cut short in February last year due to a hip problem and a groin issue has delayed his return to the Everton squad.

    “When I did the interview I said it was the best I had felt at that time, coming out of rehab and getting back ready for playing,” he added.

    “I’ve had to learn what patience is and it’s been a long journey with the injury, a lot of ups and downs, but it is something I’ve had to learn.

    View this post on Instagram

    A post shared by Dele (@dele)

    “If you had asked me before, injuries would have been right at the top of my list to mentally overcome. Before this injury the longest one was eight weeks, which felt like forever.

    “If I hadn’t gone through that process in the summer it would have been so difficult for me to go through this for over a year now.

    “It is just an injury and hopefully one I’m getting to the end of. The pain of the injury is something I can really channel and help motivate me.

    “I really had to learn what patience is, but it has made me hungrier to get back in.”

  • Xavi urges Barcelona fans to create red-hot atmosphere for PSG clash Xavi urges Barcelona fans to create red-hot atmosphere for PSG clash

    Barcelona boss Xavi wants the atmosphere to reach “boiling point” in the return leg of his side’s Champions League tie against Paris St Germain.

    Barca hold a slender 3-2 advantage after the first leg in Paris last week as they bid to reach the semi-finals for just the second time in eight seasons since lifting the trophy in 2015.

    Building work at the Nou Camp is ongoing as part of a £1.25billion refurbishment and Xavi has called on the club’s fans to turn their temporary home at Estadi Olimpic Lluis Companys into a cauldron.

    He told a press conference: “We are playing at home and Montjuic (the stadium) has to be a big-night venue. It will have to be a boiling point atmosphere.

    “We need the fans because there will be tricky moments and PSG will make us work hard and so at this time we have to be united.

    “We will have to control ourselves and take the initiative, but it will be tough. PSG will come out attacking because (head coach) Luis Enrique will not sit back. I know him well and I know they will put us under a lot of pressure.

    “We are up against one of best teams in the world, one of the most intense and they won’t gift us anything, and he is one of the best coaches in the world.”

    Barca will be without captain Sergi Roberto and Andreas Christensen, who are both suspended after receiving yellow cards in Paris.

    Xavi added: “The players banned, Sergi Roberto and Christensen, hurts us, it’s true, but the key against PSG will be to play as a team.

    “If we can do it, regardless of names, we will have a great chance. We have to give it all to get to the semi-finals.”

    PSG are bidding to progress to the last four for just the fourth time in their history and Enrique backed his side to come out on top.

    The former Spain and Barcelona boss, who is boosted by the return of Morocco international Achraf Hakimi from suspension, told a press conference: “We are absolutely convinced that we will reverse the situation.

    “Having assessed the (first leg) closely, we didn’t deserve to lose. A draw would have been a fair result, or we should have been the winner, but we accept it. We congratulate our opponents.

    “But tomorrow our goal is to turn in a great performance, be brave and go for it from the first minute to make our fans happy, because that is what we all deserve.”

  • Premier League seeks ‘urgent’ resolution to Everton appeal before end of season Premier League seeks ‘urgent’ resolution to Everton appeal before end of season

    The Premier League says it will seek to ensure the outcome of Everton’s appeal against a two-point penalty imposed earlier this month is known before the last round of top-flight games on May 19.

    Everton were docked points by an independent commission last week for an admitted breach of top-flight profitability and sustainability rules (PSR), and have now formally lodged an appeal.

    It means PSR appeal processes involving Everton and Nottingham Forest, who sit just above the Premier League relegation zone in 16th and 17th respectively, are ongoing.

    Forest’s hearing against a four-point PSR sanction is understood to have been scheduled in the week beginning April 22, and the league has now indicated it will do all it can to ensure Everton’s appeal outcome is known heading into the final round of matches.

    “Everton Football Club has appealed (against) the decision of an independent commission to impose a two-point deduction on the club following its admission of a breach of the Premier League’s profitability and sustainability rules,” a league statement read.

    “An appeal board has been appointed to hear the case after the club lodged the appeal to the chair of the judicial panel today. The case will be heard on an expedited basis, in accordance with the league’s standard directions.

    “For clarity and certainty for all clubs and fans, the Premier League will be seeking to have the appeal resolved urgently with the outcome confirmed in advance of Sunday May 19, the last day of this season.”

    The league’s standard directions were agreed by clubs at last summer’s Premier League annual general meeting, and their purpose is to ensure PSR case outcomes are known in the same season as any charge is laid, and before Premier League ‘shares’ change hands between relegated clubs and those coming up from the Championship.

    Everton admitted breaching the permitted loss threshold under the PSR by £16.6million for the assessment period ending with the 2022-23 season.

    The independent commission which imposed the sanction disclosed in the written reasons for its decision that the Premier League had initially sought a five-point penalty.

    This was reduced to two by the commission, after mitigation was taken into account – notably it felt the club were being punished twice in the same overlapping period. In February Everton had a 10-point penalty for an earlier PSR breach, up to the end of the 2021-22 season, reduced to six on appeal.

    Everton will now be aiming to achieve a further reduction to the two-point penalty via the latest appeal.

    The commission which issued the two-point penalty will also hold a separate hearing to settle a dispute between the club and the league around costs which Everton contend are associated to the construction of their new stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock.

    This dispute is not covered by the standard directions, so any sanction imposed in relation to that matter would almost certainly apply next season.

© 2023 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.