Date: 28 December 1999
The Cherries made very heavy weather of winning this game; but at least the result - and a much needed three points - gave the game the edge over the previous, frustrating, encounter between these sides at the end of last season.
The first half will be remembered for the many missed scoring chances in front of goal - by players like O'Neill - meaning that the excellent, speedy support work of Hayter and others yielded little by way of results. The one and only goal, which Stein would have been hard pressed not to score, came two minutes into injury time at the end of the half.
Bournemouth were unlucky with injuries - Cox failing a late fitness test, and his replacement as skipper, Steve Fletcher, going off with an aggravated hamstring problem during the first half. Nonetheless there is no excusing the tactics of the final twenty minutes when James Hayter switched from an attacking position to become right back in a conventional back four and even Stein began to play deeper. Defensive clearances by our players would almost immediately come straight back to them because there were no Bournemouth players up field to meet the ball.
So although we dominated large periods of the game - and played some very attractive football at times - we were fortunate not to concede a late Wrexham goal and can thank Broadhurst and Hayter, but mainly Elliott, for that fact.
I have listed, below, the starting line-up. However, Jorgensen moved to the right flank, and Hayter went up front, when Huck was brought on for the injured Steve Fletcher. And when, later, Mean and Tindall came on for Huck and Stein, we ended up with five players in the midfield and Tindall on his own up front. The two late substitutes showed a lot of energy at a time when the rest of the team was flagging.
My scores out of ten :
Broadhurst (8), Elliott (9), Warren (7);
Hayter (9), O'Neill (6), Robinson (8), C Fletcher (6), Jorgensen (7);
S Fletcher (7), Stein (7).