Howe to use Tottenham match as progress yardstick


Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe believes Sunday's trip to title-chasing Tottenham will be a good measure of his side's Premier League progress.

Howe's men have eased away from relegation danger thanks to three successive league wins and they are now two points off the top half of the league.

Bournemouth were heavily beaten by Tottenham earlier in the season, going down 5-1 at home, but Howe is looking forward to see how his team matches up against Mauricio Pochettino's side this time around.

"Tottenham were very good on the day," Howe said. "I was really impressed with their work ethic and of course they have the ability to complement that, so it's a good mix. 

"I have a lot of time for their manager as well, he's done a very good job and put together a very young and exciting squad. 

"From our point of view, the game will provide a good chance to see how far we've come and improved over the season. 

"There is no feeling inside the camp that we are safe. There won't be until it's mathematical, and even then the work ethic doesn't change: we'll still want to win games. That continues on Sunday."

Howe added that he is "not personally disappointed" that Bournemouth's English contingent, including Charlie Daniels, Andrew Surman and Simon Francis were omitted from Roy Hodgson's latest national squad, with Euro 2016 three months away.

"It means I get to keep the players with us and training with us, so from a personal point of view it's not disappointing," Howe said. 

"For the players themselves, all they can continue to do is work hard and continue performing as they have been for us. 

"They have been excellent so I am sure they would have been in Roy's mind. It's still not too late, there are still games to play and chances for them to impress."