Oct 21 AFC Bournemouth 6-3 Luton Town Att: 6388

Last updated : 25 October 2003 By Rob Mann
A superb game of football that saw the Cherries eventually run out convincing 6-3 winners and ease themselves up to the dizzy heights of 2nd in Division 2.

The game started at a frantic pace on a greasy pitch after heavy rain in the preceding couple of hours up to kick off. It was Luton who were almost to draw first blood, but the goal was ruled out for a clear offside. Both sides were looking lively with Feeney standing out for the Cherries in the early stages of the game. The first goal of this extravaganza came on the 6 minute mark - a pin-point cross from Purches and there was Soupa at the back post to make it 1-0 to the Bournemouth. Cue Soupa's customary goal celebration!

But within three minutes it was 1-1. Courtney Pitt broke down the left and put in a wicked cross which Purches tried to clear and sliced it past Moss who had no chance. Two swift chances for Bournemouth followed, with Feeney heading narrowly wide and Hayter, who should have scored, shooting narrowly wide after Feeney and Browning had put him through.

Feeney was really on fire and the Luton defenders did not know how to cope with him. However, just minutes later Luton took the lead after a dreadful decision by the referee after Carl Fletcher and McSheffrey tangled in the centre circle. Although it did not look a foul, Carl was penalised and the Bournemouth defence went to sleep, allowing Paul Hughes to go through the middle one-on-one with Moss and make no mistake with his finish. 2-1 to Luton.

Just before the half hour mark Marcus picked up a nasty head injury and was immediately subbed, with Brian Stock coming on. The next 15 minutes to me was the best period of attacking football that I have seen for a long time. We destroyed Luton with three quick goals with Luton chasing shadows. For his first touch Brian Stock stepped up to take a free kick on the edge of the box and beat Beckworth with ease. 2-2. Then, on the 40 minute mark, Feeney broke down the right leaving his markers for dead and put in a superb cross which O'Connor buried with a great header. 3-2 to Bournemouth. The Cherries were now rampant with the home fans going mad. Into injury time Purches picked up the ball on the right, crossed for Feeney who, with a superb dummy, put Soupa in with a shooting chance. Superbly taken goal.

HT: 4-2

The first 15 minutes of the second half was all Bournemouth. Hayter had a goal disallowed after a minute for offside. Stock and O'Connor worked an opening in which Stock shot narrowly wide. But on the 60 minute mark it was 4-3 with the Bournemouth defence totally absent as the unmarked Forbes scored with a header.

Within two minutes it was 5-3 when Brian Stock powered into the penalty area after picking up a loose ball and finished with a superb shot. Minutes later it was 6-3 with Steve Fletcher putting Wade Elliott in with a simple finish. Both teams had chances in the last 20 minutes but in general Bournemouth controlled the game and I felt were very professional in the way they slowed the game down.

A superb attacking performance by the Cherries - but a few defensive nightmares along the way. The way we are playing I predict the playoffs at the worst!

Warren Feeney

AFCB: Moss, Purches, Broadhurst, C Fletcher, Cummings, O'Connor, Browning, Hayter, Elliott, S Fletcher, Feeney
Subs: Stewart, Stock (for Browning, 31), Connell, Tindall (for O'Connor, 87), Thomas (for Elliott, 82)
Rob Mann, Newton Abbott