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Howe calls for Bournemouth consistency ahead of Palace trip

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By Reuters
Howe calls for Bournemouth consistency ahead of Palace trip
FILE PHOTO: Soccer Football - Premier League - Tottenham Hotspur v AFC Bournemouth - Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, London, Britain - November 30, 2019 Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe looks dejected after the match REUTERS/David Klein   -   Copyright  DAVID KLEIN(Reuters)
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(Reuters) – Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe described Bournemouth’s last four seasons in the Premier League as relegation battles and said on Monday he expects the current campaign to be no different.

The small south coast club have regularly punched above their weight, finishing inside the top 15 in three out of their four seasons in the top flight since 2015-16.

But having slipped to 12th in the standings after a run of three defeats in their last three games, Howe called for more consistency ahead of Tuesday’s trip to 11th-placed Crystal Palace.

“In the four seasons we’ve had that we’ve managed to stay in the Premier League… they have been relegation battles,” Howe told reporters.

“It’s just we’ve managed to keep our heads above the line in all of those seasons.

“So in other people’s eyes… you go ‘that’s comfortable’. The reality is it’s always been tight and we’ve just managed to get a big result when we needed it.”

Bournemouth have no fresh injury concerns ahead of the match with striker Joshua King, who missed Saturday’s 3-2 defeat by Tottenham Hotspur, still nursing a hamstring problem.

“We’re going through a spell where we’ve missed some key players,” Howe added.

“We want to be winning regularly… in our last three performances, the results could’ve been different. We are in good shape, but have to be more consistent.”

Bournemouth face a tricky pair of fixtures after their match at Palace, as they host league leaders Liverpool on Saturday before travelling back down to London on Dec. 14 to face Chelsea.

(Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru; Editing by Christian Radnedge)