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Match preview: Huddersfield Town v AFC Bournemouth
HUDDERSFIELD has seldom been a happy hunting ground for Cherries over the years, but supporters travelling from Dorset will be hoping their heroes can repeat the result achieved on their last trip to HD1.
Harry Arter’s solitary strike exacted revenge for Cherries’ play-off heartache as Lee Bradbury’s side completed an unlikely victory over the promotion-bound Terriers in December 2011.
Before that season, Cherries had failed to win any of their previous seven visits to what is now called the John Smith’s Stadium, with four draws and three defeats in league competition.
The sweet success came six months after Cherries suffered a spot-kick sickener in the League One play-off semi-final as the Terriers triumphed 4-2 on penalties following a fiercely contested 4-4 aggregate draw.
But by the time Cherries completed a memorable double in April 2012 – the last meeting between the two clubs – there were new faces in both dugouts with caretaker boss Paul Groves enjoying a rare 2-0 victory thanks to goals from Scott Malone and Marc Pugh.
But Town’s class of 2013-14 is very different to the one that lined up in Dorset 16 months ago.
Mark Robins, who took over in February, last week sent out just two of the players – goalkeeper Alex Smithies and defender Peter Clarke – that featured in Cherries’ win 16 months ago.
Much like Cherries’ Lewis Grabban, Huddersfield new boy James Vaughan has plundered four goals this season and is the only player to score for the Yorkshire outfit.
Robins’s men kicked off with a 1-0 defeat at fancied Nottingham Forest before sharing the spoils in a home clash with title favourites Queens Park Rangers. But Town grabbed their first win of the season when they escaped the Lions’ Den with a 1-0 win at Millwall last weekend.
Despite both clubs having a long history in the Football League, it was not until 1973 that the two sides finally met with Cherries managing a 1-1 draw at Leeds Road before Phil Boyer’s goal won the return fixture at Dean Court 1-0. It proved to be one of the striker’s final contributions before following Ted MacDougall to Norwich City.
And of the 42 meetings between the two clubs, only two have taken place in the second tier in 1987-88.
Echo man to watch: Ex-Everton striker James Vaughan seems to be the single goal threat in a stoic side that has struggled in the final third so far this term.
Read these other pre-match stories around the site:
- AFC Bournemouth: Terriers strikers have bite says Howe
- AFC Bournemouth: Squad rotation is vital says Hughes
- AFC Bournemouth: Robinson has no regrets about leaving Dean Court
Nickname: The Terriers
Manager: Mark Robins
Title odds: 66-1
Last season: 19th in Championship
Ground (capacity): John Smith's Stadium
Distance from Dean Court: 256 miles
Ground postcode: HD1 6PX
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