Cherries hope to avoid a sting in the tail in their final home game of the season

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AFC Bournemouth’s final home game of the season has arrived, as they take on Brentford at the Vitality Stadium at 3pm this Saturday (11th May). 


It has been a season of ups and downs for the Cherries, but one that will be remembered fondly by the fans, with the club’s record Premier League points total being beaten, and the club looking to be going in all the right directions under head coach, Andoni Iraola. 


From no wins in their first nine games, to being a net fifth in the table only counting the games since the first nine, Iraola will be happy with the season he’s had and will want to end on a high in front of a packed out Dean Court on Saturday. 


The Cherries put in a good performance last time out against Arsenal, with several controversial decisions going against them. Despite this, the performance against the current table toppers will give both the manager and the players hope that they can get a result this weekend. 


Brentford have just four league wins in 2024 and currently sit 16th in the league, 12 points behind Bournemouth, but with the Bee’s on a decent run of form, they will be no easy test for the Cherries.


On Friday afternoon, Andoni Iraola sat down with the media to preview the fixture: 


The Cherries have had a turbulent year on the injury front, with them suffering an injury ‘crisis’ for most of the year. Iraola confirmed that Lloyd Kelly is back available after missing the Arsenal game through illness. Elsewhere Tyler Adams and Marcus Tavernier will be back and part of the squad after a fairly long lay-off due to injury for both players.


 (credit: PA) 


In the last week, Iraola was announced as a nominee as Premier League manager of the season. Asked his reaction to this, Iraola was ever the humble manager, as the below clip shows, courtesy of AFC Bournemouth’s Twitter:


Nerve Sport’s section: 


One of the key changes for the Cherries recently has seen Mark Travers starting in goal in place of club captain Neto. When asked by Nerve Sport how Neto has taken this change, Iraola responded: 


“For sure he hasn’t liked it, every time you take minutes from a player they do not like it, but he has been training well, he’s been pushing. He wants to play tomorrow the same way as Mark wants to play tomorrow and I think it’s good. At the end we need to value the position between all the ‘keepers.” 

The first nine games of Iraola’s tenure were less than impressive, with no wins in those 9. But since then, he hasn’t looked back, when Nerve Sport asked if he can pinpoint a specific moment his fortunes turned around, Iraola said: 


“The offside against Burnley was a key moment, as was Philip’s goal to make it 2-1 (in the same game). We could have started the run two weeks later and got the same result, but that first win gave us confidence and we needed that. When you push and don’t get results you need something to go your way, and it finally happened there.” 


There was also a special award for Justin Kluivert just before the press conference started, it was announced that he was the club’s player of the month. Asked for a word on the Dutchman, Iraola was full of praise:


“I know him well because he has played against me before, he could play right and left side, and swap during the games to play as a nine. It is not a big surprise he can play as a 10 because he can adapt well to the forward positions and his finishing is very very strong this season and I hope he can also help us these last two games.”



Bournemouth vs Brentford kicks-off at 3pm tomorrow, follow Nerve_sport on Twitter for full coverage and live match updates!