Three talking points from Bournemouth's goalless draw with Leicester City
Bournemouth failed to make their dominance count and had to settle for a point following a tepid encounter with Leicester City at the Vitality Stadium.
The Cherries bossed proceedings but were unable to turn their supremacy into goals, with Jermain Defoe coming closest to breaking the deadlock when he hit the bar in the opening minutes.
Bournemouth, though, were incensed when referee Graham Scott waved away their penalty claims after Danny Simpson appeared to handball Marc Pugh’s goal-bound shot.
Leicester had set up defensively and will be the happier of the two teams, both of whom remain in the lower reaches of the Premier League table.
Here are three talking points.
Possession doesn’t equal points
For the second game running, Bournemouth failed to win a match they had dominated.
Last week against Everton, they squandered a lead and returned home empty-handed after Oumar Niasse’s late double. Against Leicester it was a similar story, with the Cherries unable to turn all their possession and chances into goals.
Jermain Defoe was unlucky to see his snapshot rebound off the woodwork, but Foxes keeper Kasper Schmeichel was not tested enough. The Cherries have been uncharacteristically goal-shy this season and Eddie Howe is still waiting for the Defoe-Josh King partnership to flourish.
The Bournemouth manager has options including Benik Afobe and his side, who are 19th, can ill afford to keep throwing away points.
Leicester rely too heavily on Jamie Vardy
Craig Shakespeare had clearly come to the Vitality Stadium with the objective of not getting beat. On that score, he succeeded as his team withstood everything Bournemouth threw at them. However, aside from Shinji Okazaki’s fluffed second-half effort, Leicester offered absolutely nothing going forward.
The Foxes rely heavily on Jamie Vardy to score goals and when he is ineffective, as he was against the Cherries, they look bereft of ideas.
With just five points from seven games, it has not been the start Shakespeare would have hoped for, following a terrific end to last season. He needs to find a way of making his side more potent, because defensive rearguards will not always pay off as they did here.
Youngster Lewis Cook takes his chance
Bournemouth supporters have been championing the cause of Lewis Cook recently – and the former Leeds United midfielder didn’t disappoint on his first top-flight start of the campaign.
With Harry Arter injured and Dan Gosling also struggling, Howe promoted Cook to the starting XI and his faith in the youngster was vindicated.
Cook, who lifted the Under-20 World Cup with England last summer, looked assured in possession and was at the heart of the Cherries’ creativity. The ability to see a defence-splitting pass is something Bournemouth have lacked since Jack Wilshere returned to Arsenal after a season-long loan.
However, Cook, whose performance earned him the man-of-the-match award, showed immense promise.