Edwards aware in-form Cherries are currently as tough as it gets in the top flight

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Bournemouth on a run of four wins from five ahead of Luton clash

Luton boss Rob Edwards believes that tomorrow’s opponents AFC Bournemouth are up there as one of the toughest tests in the Premier League on current form.

A difficult start to life at the Vitality Stadium for manager Andoni Iraola, brought in when Gary O’Neil was harshly dismissed in the summer after achieving safety in the top flight, had seen the Cherries win just one of the opening 11 matches, including a 6-1 defeat against Manchester City, to languish in the relegation zone.

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However, a 2-0 victory over Newcastle saw the south coast side burst into life as they are now unbeaten in five, with four victories, including a statement 3-0 success at Manchester United last weekend, to sit in 14th place, some 10 points above the Hatters.

Hatters boss Rob Edwards - pic: Liam SmithHatters boss Rob Edwards - pic: Liam Smith
Hatters boss Rob Edwards - pic: Liam Smith

With Luton on a three game losing streak themselves, but knowing a success would boost their own chances of survival, previewing the contest, Edwards said: “They’re really impressive, I think they’ve been building nicely and probably deserved a few more points in those early stages than they actually got as well.

“But really impressive performances, deservedly got the wins and the points they have in recent games, they deserve all the plaudits that they’re getting. Andoni’s doing a fantastic job, changing the way that they play and finding results in the Premier League, I know it’s difficult and have a lot of respect for what he’s doing.

“Right now, they’re as difficult as anyone in the league and people wouldn't have said that a few weeks ago, but they have gone on a fantastic run. Over the last seven games I think they are second in the form table, their last result was incredible, the performance was brilliant as well. They're high energy, really good individuals, well coached, this is as difficult as it gets at the moment in the league and we recognise that.”

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Going into more detail on just the kind of threats that Bournemouth, who have striker Dominic Solanke in excellent goalscoring form, finding the net eight times in 16 appearances, will pose, Edwards continued: “They’re very fast in transition and I don’t mean this in a disrespectful way, but they can be direct and quick with their attacks. They can play good, slick football, but they can do it quickly as well with the attributes of the players they’ve got, especially at the top end of the pitch.

"I think basically what they’ll do is make good decisions, like any good team. It’ll give us something to think about, so if we do step on and push forward then we’ve got to be aware of what space we’re leaving behind.”

Despite knowing just what kind of form Town’s opponents are in, Edwards has been preparing his team to try and pick up a third top flight victory of the season, adding: “I’ve seen a really good energy in training and we’re certainly going to need that as this team tomorrow are as energetic as probably anyone in the Premier League.

“Our week has been with complete respect, this is what they can do, their strengths, potential areas that we can exploit and all our work has been on how we feel we can win the game.”