After a number of superb performances in the Championship last season that galvanized Bournemouth in their promotion charge, Artur Boruc quickly became a cult-hero at the Vitality Stadium and earned himself a permanent move.
However, it now seems Boruc is putting the Cherries’ newly earned Premier League status in jeopardy with a string of errors.
In a 5-1 home hammering by Tottenham over the weekend, the Polish keeper was singled out as Bournemouth’s weak link. Despite a number of excellent saves, Boruc’s handling was nonexistent and he could have gifted Spurs even more goals.
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Number two goalkeeper Adam Federici conceded five at Manchester City two weeks ago before and was in equally poor form. As a result, Eddie Howe was swift to bring Boruc back into the starting line-up for the Spurs game upon his return from injury.
Bournemouth started the game promisingly and took the lead after only 49 seconds via Matt Richie’s volley. Yet only eight minutes later, Boruc’s erratic tackle on Harry Kane gifted the away side a penalty. Kane proceeded to convert the spot kick and level the game.
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After a rare strike from Moussa Dembele, the spotlight was cast on Boruc again. The 35-year-old ignominiously spilt a weak Kane cross to the feet of Erik Lamela who found the net.
In the second half, Boruc could only flap away a weak Toby Alderweireld header into the path of Kane to complete his hat trick and gift the away side their fifth. BBC commentator Jonathan Pearce described the error as a “howler” and “horrible goalkeeping”.
Moreover, a series of further drops late in the game nearly presented Spurs with further opportunities to score in a Bournemouth blood bath.
However, since the game and Boruc’s catastrophic personal performance, his manager has publically backed him.
According to the Bournemouth Echo, Howe said: “Artur is very strong mentally and is resolute when it comes to goalkeeping errors. He has seen it, been there and done it so I won’t have a problem lifting him.”
“There is a need for the team to eradicate these errors and we need to make sure our goalkeepers rediscover their form because they are so important in every game in your ability to keep clean sheets which is something we need to focus on.”
“Artur has been excellent since he has been here and he played a huge part in our promotion. It is part of a goalkeeper’s job. They are going to make mistakes and errors. We just need to make sure he responds in the right way.”
As for the man himself, Boruc simply stated: “We just need to get back to the training ground and work hard.”