They say a week is a long time in football so a fortnight can be an eternity and the change in fortunes for AFC Bournemouth over the past 14 days shows why this sports term has become a cliché.
Cast the clocks back to February 28 and the Cherries’ 0-0 draw with Blackburn made it five games without a win for Eddie Howe’s men and the promotion charge, which had looked solid with Bournemouth topping the standings for longer than any other team this season, appeared to be slipping away.
However, since then the Dean Court outfit have beaten Wolves 2-1 and played some football almost as good as Fulham’s was bad when beating the Cottagers 5-1 in west London.
Now back at the summit, the Cherries look nailed on to remain there this weekend with the fixture list offering a helping hand.
Bottom club Blackpool make the long trip down to Boscombe this weekend and with just one win in 10 games the rejuvenated Cherries, who this week welcomed Eunan O’Kane back to full fitness, will be confident of picking up a third straight win.
It’s not just the arrival of the Tangerines that will have Howe and his squad smiling though as the fixture list has also pitted Middlesbrough and Ipswich against each other, while Norwich will also host Derby.
A perfect result for Bournemouth fans would be a win over Blackpool and draws in both of the other ties but even if the other matches yield winners the gap between the Cherries and seventh place could be as big as eight points with nine games to go.
After the Fulham game Howe said the season had now turned into a 10-game mini season, and if that analogy is to be used then the Kings Park club look primed to have the best of starts.
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