Date: 18 March 2000
Ironically, this was a match that some Bournemouth fans wanted their team to lose - to add to the pressure on Machin to leave. It was especially galling that we should win a match which we played with only one forward, because it might encourage Mel to use that tactic again!
It wasn't the best of matches to watch, partly because the away terrace is so low lying that one has a difficult perspective on the game; in particular we hardly saw the first goal at all.
We did, however, enjoy Robinson's penalty towards the end, which was scored right in front of us. A well-taken penalty, but we were a little lucky to be awarded it when O'Neill was brought down after he'd over-run in the penalty area and probably wouldn't have been able to score anyway. O'Neill's ear-to-ear grin as he looked up at the Bournemouth fans more or less admitted as much!
Brentford were dreadful, so although we had few chances on goal (and they certainly had more than we did) we should still see the result as fair - especially considering that both Robinson and Jorgensen had a chance of a second goal in the closing minutes of the game. Curiously, Robinson was the first to leave the pitch at the end, hardly glancing towards the fans. This fuelled suspicion that he might be expecting to leave on transfer deadline day, making this his final match for the Cherries.
Half an hour before the end, new signing Elliott came on for Hayter and played in the wide right position and showed some good touches (but without the aggression we'd seen at Reading). Close to the end, Tindall took O'Neill's place.
My scores out of ten :
Young (7), Howe (7), O'Shea (7), Warren(7);
Hayter (6); O'Neill (7), Robinson (7), Jorgensen (7);
S Fletcher (6)