Eddie Howe taking positives from Bournemouth’s draw with Tottenham
The Cherries are three points from safety with four games of the season left.
Eddie Howe believes Bournemouth have found some momentum in their battle to avoid relegation from the Premier League.
Bournemouth remain in a perilous position with four games of the season remaining, filling the final relegation place and three points adrift of Watford above them.
But the Cherries ended a five-game losing streak on Thursday by holding Tottenham to a goalless draw at the Vitality Stadium.
“We have to feed off every positive fibre of that performance,” Howe said ahead of Sunday’s home game against Leicester.
“The physical effort, the heart and endeavour showed, and the quality we showed at times as well. That will give the players a huge lift, no doubt.
“We know that good performances in itself, even if it is an upturn on recent weeks, is not going to be enough. We need results.
“Yes, we want another good performance but we want to turn that building of momentum into goals and obviously into wins.”
Bournemouth thought they had claimed a first win since beating Aston Villa on February 1 when Callum Wilson’s 90th-minute overhead kick was ruled out.
The ball brushed Josh King’s hand on the way in and VAR official Michael Oliver disallowed the goal in accordance with the handball law that was introduced at the start of the season.
“The players were hurting from the fact that we didn’t win, especially with the emotion of the goal and then it wasn’t a goal,” Howe said.
“That’s not easy to take and we had Harry Wilson’s late chance as well.
“There was a feeling that the game was there to win and we hadn’t, so there was a bit of disappointment in there.
“It was important I highlighted how well I thought we’d done.
“I was really pleased with the players, a lot has been chucked at us.
“A lot of questions have been asked and the only place you can respond is on the pitch. I felt we did in the right way.”
Bournemouth’s tough run-in also includes a home game with local rivals Southampton and trips to Manchester City and Everton.
But Howe – who will be without Adam Smith on Sunday after the full-back suffered a head injury against Tottenham – took encouragement from a first clean sheet in 17 league games.
“You have to believe you’re good enough to keep clean sheets,” Howe said.
“We haven’t kept enough of them this season and I think that was a huge step in the right direction.
“It was not just that we did it, but the way we did it. We limited some of the best attackers in the country to minimum goalmouth action.
“It proves to me and the team that we can be resolute to absorb pressure because Tottenham did have quite a bit of the ball as well.”