Eddie Howe: Bournemouth must find killer touch in front of goal

Boss Eddie Howe has urged his Bournemouth side to start taking their chances after they drew a blank in a goalless draw at Watford.

The Cherries had 15 shots – five on target – at Vicarage Road but could not find the net and have now failed to score in three consecutive Premier League games for the first time since December 2017.

Bournemouth brought the best out of Watford goalkeeper Ben Foster, and Howe insisted it was a better performance from his side.

“The chances were there for us,” Howe said when asked about the performance. “There were various moments where potentially we could have done better.

“Similar to last week we didn’t quite get the final bit right but in terms of an attacking display it was a better all-round performance.”

On the close nature of the game, Howe added: “The beauty of it is we are improving defensively and I’ve had that feeling all season, we’re getting better from a structure and confidence thing.

“But it’s a two-way thing with the attacking and we’ll have to go away and improve that.”

Watford have also had their issues in front of goal, scoring just five times in their 10 Premier League games this season and failing to find the net in six of those matches.

The home side had the best of the early chances, but without a natural striker – Troy Deeney and Danny Welbeck were sidelined – the Hornets struggled to find an attacking outlet.

Roberto Pereyra and Gerard Deulofeu were paired up front, and when asked about the performance of the duo, Watford boss Quique Sanchez Flores said: “They are not complete strikers but they have different qualities, skills and they can cause different problems for the defensive line of Bournemouth.

“So Pereyra is getting good balls in the last third, is playing well, is creating space in the side for the full-backs and Deulofeu has been shooting and dribbling closer to the box, so they try with their characteristics.

“We need to work with the strikers we have and right now this is the strikers we have.”

Currently bottom of the table, Flores knows the Hornets have to improve, but insists they are getting closer to a first Premier League victory of the season.

The Spaniard said: “The necessity now is that we get bigger because we need to try to get in another part of the table.

“But we are not losing so we don’t lose confidence, we are more mature defending, we don’t concede too much…the feeling is the team is growing, every single week I can feel it, all the weekends we go with the passion to win and I can feel it’s closer.”

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