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Howe: “We weren’t at our best”

AFC Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe has expressed his disappointment after his side fell to a 2-1 defeat against Norwich City, on Saturday afternoon.

The defeat ends the Cherries fourteen game unbeaten domestic run, despite the Canaries being reduced to ten men during the second half.

Cameron Jerome’s late strike for Alex Neil’s side saw them grab all three points, as Bournemouth were unable to exploit the red card shown to Jonny Howson.

“I’m disappointed obviously as I don’t think we showed the real Bournemouth today, for whatever reason” Howe said.

“We didn’t show our usual fluency with the ball, I think you have to give Norwich the credit for that, especially when they went down to 10-men.

“We turned the ball over a little bit too cheaply, which is unlike us, and credit to Norwich to how they moved the ball in the first half.

“At 1-1, against 10 men, you’d expect us to bombard their goal, and for whatever reason it didn’t really happen and that’s probably the big disappointment.

“We weren’t at our best today and that’s why we were beaten.”

Bournemouth still sit happily at the top of the Championship on goal difference, but only four points separate the top four sides.

The Bournemouth manager expressed his disappointment in the Norwich equaliser, which appeared to be handled by Michael Turner in the build up, before Gary Hooper smashed the ball home:

“The key decision in the game was obviously the handball for their goal which I thought was wrong, that was a clear handball. That’s turned out to be a key moment in the game.

“The interesting thing is the Norwich celebrations, they’re muted and they know that it was a handball and the goal shouldn’t have stood”.

Despite the frustrating performance and result, Howe was keen for his team to bounce back into their previous form.

“We’re going to have to be at our best to win games and we’re going to need the crowds support through tough times to make sure we continue the success we’ve had.

“So hopefully this defeat today could in turn be a positive in the long run.

“We need to bounce back quickly, and with a better performance hopefully and I think that’s the only way we can reflect on today.”

Bournemouth next face a  trip to the struggling Rotherham in just under a week.