Howe: We needed all of our patience

Gabor Gyepes wins an aerial battle with Lewis Grabban
Gabor Gyepes wins an aerial battle with Lewis Grabban

Eddie Howe felt Bournemouth needed all their patience after heaping praise on Pompey’s dogged display.

The League One high-fliers closed the gap at the top of the table with the 2-0 victory that bolstered their bid for promotion to the Championship.

But the Bournemouth boss, who spent an injury-hit spell at Fratton Park during his playing days, knew his side had to avoid frustrations as they sought to break down a resolute Pompey defence.

Howe said: ‘We needed that patience.

‘It was pretty much the game we expected it to be and we prepared for that all week.

‘Despite that, it was very difficult to break Portsmouth down.

‘They were very well organised and they added a bit of experience to their team in the past couple of days.

‘That had a big part to play in making them so resolute, so full credit to them for how difficult they made it for us.

‘We had to be patient and we needed the crowd to understand what we were playing against.

‘They did that, they stuck with the players and thankfully, we saw the game out in the end.

‘But it took time because Portsmouth sat deep, they were very rigid and we probably didn’t put enough balls in the box in the first half and didn’t have enough tempo about our play.’

With Bournemouth closing in on promotion, the Cherries manager knows his side will face similar challenges as the rest of the season unfolds.

‘I think the tone has been set with the way a lot of teams have set up to play us,’ added Howe.

‘We want to be progressive and score goals but teams will try to stop you from doing that.

‘They will do whatever they can to combat your style of play.

‘A lot of teams have done that to us and I’m sure there will be plenty more who will try to do the same thing.’