Howe expects tight finish

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April 05, 2015 16:25:23 UK

Eddie Howe expects a tight finish to a ‘crazy’ Championship promotion race.

Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe has labelled the Championship as “crazy” and he does not expect one team to run away with the title in the run-in.

The Cherries are one of eight teams separated by just seven points at the top of the table with just six matches remaining this season.

A 1-1 draw at fellow promotion hopefuls Ipswich on Good Friday saw the south coast outfit relinquish top spot to Middlesbrough, who defeated struggling Wigan 1-0 at the Riverside Stadium.

Everyone is hoping they can be the team to break away but, with so few games to go, I think it looks unlikely.

Eddie Howe

However Bournemouth could go back to the top on Easter Monday as Boro travel to third-placed Watford and they host a Birmingham side which they destroyed 8-0 at St Andrew’s back in October.

And while Howe would love his side to win the game and then continue picking up maximum points to stride to the Championship title before the final day on 2nd May, he does not feel it will work out that way for any of the teams fighting it out for a place in the Premier League.

Howe told the Daily Echo: “I have never known it as tight as this. It’s just crazy. Everyone is hoping they can be the team to break away but, with so few games to go, I think it looks unlikely.

“It is going to be down to the team which holds its nerve the most, continues to avoid the pressure and maintains their performance levels. We are hoping that can be us.”

Howe also played down their post-war record second-tier away win against the Blues given that Gary Rowett has since replaced Lee Clarke in the manager’s role and has dragged the team towards the top half of the table on a run of just two defeats in their last 15 games.

He added: “Gary has done a superb job with the team. He has organised them and they are now really hard to beat.”

Bournemouth are 2.50 to win the Championship, and 1.33 to be promoted, while they can be backed at 1.40 to defeat Birmingham on Monday. The Blues are 9.00 and the draw is 5.00.

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