Football – England – League One
Tuesday 6th November 2012 – Kickoff: 1945hrs
Improving Bournemouth take on struggling Shrewsbury Town at their Seward Stadium on Tuesday night with the hosts looking to extend their unbeaten run to five matches under the resumption of Eddie Howe’s second stint at the south coast club.
It’s no coincidence that Bournemouth’s fortunes changed for the better once Howe returned following a disappointing tenure at Burnley and he was lured back to the club that he steered away from relegation from the football league and then onto promotion from League Two the next season.
Very popular with the fans, Eddie Howe has instantly made an impact upon The Cherries once again and they have embarked on a four match unbeaten run which includes wins over Leyton Orient, League Two leaders Tranmere Rovers and Carlisle United as well as dishing out a 4-0 thrashing of Dagenham & Redbridge in the first round of the FA Cup on Saturday.
Howe’s influence should not be underestimated, and despite sitting in 16th place now, the club is on the rise again and therefore there are opportunities to make money; a home record of 2-4-1 11/8 isn’t bad but I expect The Cherries to add to the win tally before too long.
Striker Lee Barnard and creative midfielder Marc Pugh (4 goals apiece) are the main goal threats while Pugh has also contributed with 2 assists. But there are also players like Josh McQuoid, Matt Tubbs, Harry Arter, Lewis Grabban and Charlie Daniels all vying for starting places in a competitive squad.
Visitors Shrewsbury Town are one of just four clubs yet to win away from home in League Two; Brentford, Bury and Hartlepool United are the others, and Shrewsbury find themselves in the unfamiliar position of just above the relegation places following a dismal start to the season.
Just three wins so far this term (all at home) whilst their away form stands at 03-4 6/11 and they have in fact now gone 21 matches without a win in League One football, their last win on the road was back in April 2012 beating Macclesfield Town 3-1 who were eventually relegated to the Blue Square Premier.
So, it’s clear to see why they’re struggling so badly at the moment particularly with the absence of injured leading scorer Marvin Morgan (5 goals). Creative midfielder Paul Parry (4 goals) will need to be watched closely though along with Matthew Richards (3 goals) and forward Asa Hall who bagged a brace in their 2-2 draw with Colchester United on Saturday.
I have to back Bournemouth in this one with the Howe factor, and I’ll back The Cherries to record another home win perhaps 2-0.
Pick: Bournemouth straight win @ 1.73 Coral