Author: Dan Davis

Cabeleira confirmed as new Poppies boss

Bournemouth FC are delighted to announce the appointment of Leo Cabeleira as First Team Manager.

Leo had worked alongside Michael Cuffie as Assistant Manager at Victoria Park for two years, and held a major role in the Club’s third place Wessex Premier finish and success in the Bournemouth Senior Cup last season.

Diogo Almeida remains part of the First Team coaching staff, and will share the role of Assistant Manager alongside Danny Blakeley.

We also welcome Tom Pointing, Andy Heustice and Pawel Kowalski, who have been appointed Physio and Goalkeeping Coaches respectively.

As preparations for the new campaign begin, full details of our pre-season fixture list can now be found on our website.

2019/20 Coaching Staff:

Manager: Leo Cabeleira

Assistant Managers: Diogo Almeida, Danny Blakeley

Goalkeeping Coaches: Andy Heustice, Pawel Kowalski

Physio: Tom Pointing

Kit Manager: Eddie Mills


Bournemouth Poppies let two-goal lead slip in draw with Lymington

Written by Carlo Simone (@CSimonejourno)

Bournemouth Poppies extended their winless run to four after losing a two-goal lead away to Lymington.

After a first half in which Lymington dominated, Poppies took the lead midway through the second half from Manny Ohameje’s finish.

River Smith then doubled their lead just a few minutes later with a confident finish across goal.

However, Lymington finally capitalised on their chances as a Mike Gosney brace, including one from the penalty spot, secured the hosts a share of the points.

Manager Michael Cuffie made three changes to the side that faced Shaftesbury Town the previous week.

Marcus Cullen, Harry Cooper and Shiv Roushbaiani were replaced by Harvey Elsom, Manny Ohameje and Stepan Nersonski, who was making his first start in three months after returning from injury.

There was an added element of interest to this tie as Lymington had three former Poppies players in their squad. Ron Frost and Steve Flynn were in the starting XI, whilst Mikey Finch was on the bench.

The Linnets started off the game with attacking intent, as Elsom did well to block a shot from Lewis Ross, which Frost then followed up with an absolute piledriver of a strike which went just over the bar.

On 16 minutes Poppies then had their best chance of the half. A superb headed flick-on from Ohameje played in Smith, but Lymington goalkeeper Nic Jones rushed out and saved his effort.

Sam Jones in the opposite goal then had to deny Flynn after the striker’s low header flew straight at him.

The Poppies goalkeeper then maintained an impressive display throughout the rest of the half to ensure the visitors remained on level terms.

First, he provided a strong right hand to deny Gosney’s drive at the near post, before tipping another shot from the striker over the bar.

The Linnets then did have the ball in the back of the net following a long throw-in into the penalty area, but it was disallowed for Jones being impeded.

Poppies had been poor in that first half, and it initially seemed like that was going to continue in the second.

Frost was very close to getting on the scoresheet as his effort was cleared off the line after the ball fell back to him from a corner.

Then against the run of play, the visitors took the lead.

Smith was again played through on goal, and this time rounded the onrushing Jones.

However, he’d played it too far to one side and had to cut back. He then found the onrushing Ohameje, who smashed a superb shot past Jones.

This inspired some confidence in Smith, who doubled the Poppies’ lead just six minutes later.

He received the ball just outside the penalty area and struck a confident finish across goal.

The rest of the game was an open, flowing affair, as Aziz Aldahayan put Smith through on goal once again, but Jones came out on top in that situation to stop him making it 3-0.

This was arguably the turning point in the game as Lymington cut the deficit a minute later. Gosney curled an effort into the top corner on his left foot.

Smith was then agonisingly close to restoring Bournemouth’s two goal advantage, as he shot wide from a central position after Ohameje had headed the ball back to him.

However, on 83 minutes Lymington were awarded a penalty for a handball from a corner, which Gosney duly dispatched by sending Jones the wrong way.

The rest of the game revolved around a series of continuous counter-attacks and disruptive fouls without any significant chances being fashioned.

The full-time whistle then blew and whilst Poppies could be happy at a much improved second half display, there was still disappointment with the two dropped points.

Poppies left frustrated as spoils shared with Shaftesbury

Report from Carlo Simone (@CSimonejourno) at Victoria Park

Bournemouth Poppies claimed a point against Shaftesbury Town to end their two-game Wessex Premier losing streak.

After a dire first 45 minutes, River Smith gave Poppies the lead midway through the second half, but Shaftesbury’s Greg Peel cancelled that out just minutes later.

On the balance of play Shaftesbury then should have gone on and won the match, but Poppies’ goalkeeper Sam Jones was in fine form to keep them out.

Two changes were made by manager Michael Cuffie’s starting XI after last week’s defeat to Hamble Club.

Marcus Cullen and Ali Zintany replaced Dom Falco and Manny Ohameje.

Despite this the squad didn’t start out with any fluency in their play.

Shaftesbury had the first couple of chances as Jack Mitchell shot just over and Peel fired off target after initially dispossessing Chia Khider.

On 13 minutes Poppies arguably had the best chance of the half as Smith was played in through on goal.

However, goalkeeper Paul Woods did very well to come out and block the effort.

After that brief chance, the Rockies were once again in the ascendancy as Ben Wood cut inside on his left foot, only to see his soft effort go straight at Jones.

Mitchell then had a shot trickle wide, before Jones had to get down to stop Peel’s low effort.

Both sides were finding it tricky to string more than a few passes together, which was made harder by the ball being held up in the wind on multiple occasions.

Just before the half ended Bournemouth finally fashioned another clear-cut opportunity.

Harry Cooper tried a curling shot from just outside the penalty area which forced Woods to palm the ball away.

Half-time was then reached in what had been a largely turgid affair with few genuine chances.

When the second half began Shaftesbury carried on where they left off, with Wood forcing Jones into a low save almost instantly.

The Rockies midfielder was then denied a goal on 55 minutes as his bouncing shot from a cross was brilliantly cleared off the line by Chris Speers.

This helped shake Bournemouth up a bit as Fawzi Saadi then whipped in a delightful cross which narrowly missed substitute Manny Ohameje, who was running into the area.

Smith then made up for the golden chance he missed in the first half by giving Poppies the lead.

He found himself through on goal again, but this time made no mistake by finishing across goal into the bottom corner.

However, this lead was to be short-lived. Minutes later Peel smashed in from six yards after the ball fell to him from a long throw-in.

Both sides tried their best to take the advantage in the last 20 minutes as the wind and rain got worse.

Saadi was close to getting Bournemouth’s second as he fired straight at Woods, after substitute Nasim Meddah found him with a cross.

First Smith then Meddah had long range strikes go over, whilst Jones did incredibly well to deny Wood as he was played in on goal.

Mitchell then saw a deflected shot go wide, and that would prove to be the last action of the game.

Whilst it was a point gained, it still wasn’t hugely beneficial to Bournemouth’s top four ambitions.

Bournemouth Poppies bow out the quarter finals of the Hampshire Cup

Photo credit: Southampton FC photographer James Bridle

Report from Berk Uyal at Victoria Park

Bournemouth Poppies are out of the Hampshire Senior Cup after a 2-0 loss against Southampton at Victoria Park in the quarter finals.

It was a cold Tuesday evening at Victoria Park, with the Poppies looking to continue their journey in the cup.

In the early stages of the game, Southampton looked more dangerous coming forward. The visitors had a shot which flew beyond goalkeeper Sam Jones, before being cleared off the line.

Poppies defender Manny Ohameje then gave away a free kick outside the penalty area, and was booked for the offence. Saints’ captain Tom O’Connor curled the ball past the wall and past Jones, putting the visitors into the lead within 15 minutes.

Dom Falco had almost responded to the opener within five minutes after the ball was flicked towards him, but his lofted attempt went wide.

The away side continued to pressure, forcing a Poppies defender to lose the ball. Jonathan Afolabi sent his shot straight into Jones’ hands, however.

Before the half-time whistle, the host’s skipper Ron Frost flashed the ball just centimetres wide from a header.

With that action came the whistle for the interval, the difference between the two sides slender but with the visitors showing more quality than Poppies.

As the second half commenced, Poppies came close to an equaliser with Fawzi Saadi, but the veteran wideman fired an effort just wide.

Southampton continued their dominance from the first half into the second period of the game.

Poppies made their first substitution in the 56th minute, with Ali Zintany on for Shiv Roushbaiani.

The hosts then increased their pressure through Frost, after an impressive cross into River Smith, but the captain missed the ball narrowly – an important chance which would have drawn Poppies level.

Poppies then appealed for a foul after a crunching challenge on Aziz Aldahayan, but the referee was unmoved and waved play on.

With the last few minutes of the game ticking down, Southampton looked to be the better side and duly sealed their semi-final spot after Jamie Bradley-Green converted from a corner.

In added time, Poppies made a second substitution – Jake Harvey replacing midfielder Chia Khider.

And the referee then blew the final whistle, forcing Poppies to say farewell to the Hampshire Senior Cup.

The hosts gave a courageous performance, but Southampton’s quality proved the difference throughout the 90 minutes.

Poppies will now be looking to bounce back with three points next week at Horndean.

Poppies: Jones, Aldhayan, Elsom, Wensley, Ohameje, Khider (Harvey), Frost, Roushbaiani (Zintany), Saadi, Falco, Smith

Unused subs: Stacey, Garcia, Huston-Mendy

Poppies hold on against Baffins in five goal thriller

Report from Rob Edwards (@rob_edwards19) at Victoria Park

Bournemouth Poppies survived a late scare to beat Baffins Milton Rovers 3-2 at Victoria Park courtesy of three first-half goals.

The home side, who were looking to build on Saturday’s win at Christchurch, dominated the first-half at the Winton-based ground and were rewarded with a three-goal cushion at the interval.

Ron Frost blasted in the opener from the spot only nine minutes in, before Harry Cooper added a second with a fine strike from outside the box.

River Smith added a third shortly before the break, putting the home side in firm control.

Two late Shane Cornish strikes weren’t enough for the away side to get anything from the match, and it was the Poppies who grabbed all three points.

The last time these two sides met at Victoria Park, the away side ran out comfortable 3-0 winners.

The Poppies were clearly eager to put this right, putting the pressure on the visitors right from the first minute.

After only nine minutes, midfielder Frost was given the chance to give the Poppies a deserved lead from the spot after Fawzi Saadi was brought down. He made no mistake finding the top left-hand corner giving the ‘keeper no chance.

The away side offered little in the way of a response after conceding early on. Falco then fired wide of the Rovers’ goal on 27 minutes after taking aim from outside the area.

Poppies were the only side offering anything going forward and on the half-hour mark they were rewarded with a second goal.

Midfielder Cooper let fly from the edge of the area, with his shot wrong-footing the visitors’ goalkeeper. The ball nestled in the bottom left-hand corner to give the home side breathing space.

Just before half-time the Poppies were able to grab a third thanks to their no. 9, River Smith. He maintained his composure after being put clean through by rounding the ‘keeper and rolling the ball into an empty net.

With that goal came the last piece of action of the first half and the home side went in at the break rightly delighted with their showing so far.

When play resumed after the interval, the Poppies seemed determined to see out the lead which their first-half display had given them.

Both teams created very little, with the only chance of note coming from Falco, who perhaps should have done better when he received the ball inside the area. He could only fire wide of goal.

It looked increasingly likely that the Poppies would maintain their three-goal cushion up until the final whistle.

That was until the game flipped on 75 minutes when Poppies centre-half Chris Speers was shown a straight red for a late challenge on Rovers’ man Tommy Leigh.

The numerical advantage gave the away side renewed belief that they may still be able to get something out of a match which, for the majority, they hadn’t been in.

On 87 minutes, Cornish scored what seemed to be a consolation for the visitors after his header beat Sam Jones at the near-post following a cross from the left.

However, a couple of minutes later, Cornish had his and Rovers’ second when he got ahead of his man to convert inside the six-yard box after a fine ball in from the left.

These two late goals meant the home side were left holding on to a lead, which for 75 minutes never looked in doubt.

It was backs against the wall for the Poppies as they looked to withstand the late onslaught from the away side.

Falco could have made their job a whole lot easier if he put away a late chance on the counter-attack. He could only fire a shot straight at Scott after being put clean through, however.

Despite this miss, there was no grand-stand finish and the Poppies managed to hold on to all three points.

This win meant that the Poppies were up to third in the table, moving above Portland United.

They will be looking for another win as they travel to Bashley this coming Saturday.

Poppies: Jones, Aldhayan, Wensley, Speers, Elsom, Frost, Cullen (Khider, 72), Cooper, Saadi (Ohameje, 54), Smith (Langston, 78), Falco

Poppies overcome Christchurch in tight local derby

Report by Carlo Simone (@CSimoneJourno) at M A Hart Stadium

Bournemouth Poppies edged past local rivals Christchurch 2-0 in a tough Wessex Premier encounter at the M A Hart Stadium.

In a game low on quality and chances, a River Smith strike put the Poppies in front in the first half, but it wasn’t until right at the end of the second that the points were secure thanks to Manny Ohameje’s contribution.

Poppies were unbeaten against Christchurch in their two previous fixtures this season and looked set to continue that on their first half showing.

However, it was Christchurch who had the first meaningful chance as Ash Pope shot straight at goalkeeper Sam Jones from twenty yards.

Fawzi Saadi then was close to setting Aziz Aldahayan through on goal, but a Christchurch defender got ahead of him to snuff out the danger.

Saadi tried to turn provider again, as he laid the ball off to Chia Khider after he was played into the area, but the midfielder’s effort was blocked.

Pope then tried his luck from a free kick, which smashed into the Poppies wall, and from another set piece saw the cross elude his fellow players.

The visitors then should have taken the lead a few minutes later.

Falco had a shot across the area which unintentionally happened to be a great pass to River Smith, but his effort was blocked on the line by Harvey Wright.

In the 32nd minute Smith this time found the net. A over the top through ball aimed for Falco had been shielded away by a Christchurch defender only for Smith to run onto it instead and finish through the legs of Max Frampton.

This goal imbued Bournemouth with further attacking impetus, as Khider cut inside on his left foot but could only curl the ball into the arms of Frampton.

Just a minute later Smith found Saadi just a few yards out, but his effort was agonisingly scuffed past the near post.

Half time was reached not long after, and on the balance of play Poppies deserved their lead.

However, Christchurch were not going to give up without a fight.

They came out in the second half with renewed energy, as substitute Max Wilcock did well to create a crossing opportunity, only to see it just elude an onrushing Pope.

Pope then went close twice more in quick succession, firstly he flashed a long-range strike wide before he hit a bouncing free-kick which Jones dealt with.

From then on in the game turned quite scrappy for the next twenty minutes as few chances were created in increasingly blustery conditions.

It wasn’t until the 78th minute that Christchurch fashioned another shot on goal, as Wilcock volleyed over after a cross was only partially cleared.

Falco had a shot deflected wide, whilst substitute Ohameje forced a save from Frampton from a tight angle, but the effort wouldn’t have counted as he had ran the ball out for a goal kick.

The Poppies then had a scare as Jones had to tip over an attempted clearance from defender Mark Cullem for a corner.

However, in the 90th minute Poppies’ defensive efforts paid off as they struck a crucial blow.

Nasim Meddah’s cross found Ohameje, who did well to turn and send Frampton the wrong way.

The full time whistle blew a few minutes later, as Poppies claimed all three points in a stubborn, but by no means perfect display.

Poppies held to frustrating Fareham stalemate

Report from Rob Edwards (@rob_edwards19) at Victoria Park

Bournemouth Poppies missed the chance to record back-back wins in the league after failing to find a way through a stubborn Fareham Town defence in a 0-0 draw at Victoria Park.

The Poppies faced a Fareham side who had lost their last four games in all competitions going into this one.

However, they were the side who went closet in the first half with Fareham frontman Andrea Carrera seeing his shot cannon back off the bar early on.

A rain covered pitch caused difficulties for both sides, but the Poppies still managed to create numerous openings.

Both River Smith and Dominic Falco missed good chances in the second half to give the Poppies the lead on the night.

This was the first time the two sides had met this season, with each enjoying contrasting form going into the game.

The Poppies were looking to build on their 5-1 home win against Bremerton Heath Harlequins last time out, whilst Fareham were looking for their first win since the beginning of January.

It was the Poppies who enjoyed much of the early possession, creating the first clear opening four minutes in when forward Falco received the ball on the edge of the six-yard box, but he could only fire his shot straight at Fareham keeper Declan McCarthy.

Moments later, fine wing play from Fareham’s Carrera allowed him to find space outside the area to unleash a ferocious shot onto the Poppies goal. Poppies keeper Sam Jones was left counting his lucky stars after the shot cannoned back off the bar.

Following early chances for both teams, the game turned scrappy highlighted by the referee brandishing cards to both sides. Fareham’s Carrera receiving one for a late challenge and River Smith for the Poppies after an un-intentional handball in the penalty area.

Despite this, the Poppies started to come on strong before the interval and Falco really should have put them ahead when he was put clean through but failed to keep his shot down with it sailing over the bar.

The visitors perhaps should have taken the lead on the brink of half-time when Lewis Stockford, Fareham’s biggest threat throughout the game, found space in the area but saw his shot skew past the post.

That miss saw the first half come to an end with both sides feeling un-fortunate not to have found the net.

The second half began with the rain continuing to fall, but the Poppies refused to let it dampen their spirits.

They were the side looking more likely to break the deadlock and it didn’t take them long to carve open their first chance following the break.

On 54 minutes, Falco saw his header denied by McCarthy after the Fareham keeper got down well to push it out for a corner.

It was Falco again who perhaps had the best chance of the match when he was put clean through 62 minutes in. With just the keeper to beat, the Poppies man fired his shot straight at the on-rushing McCarthy. Moments later he was given a second bite of the cherry but saw his shot saved at the near post.

Despite the Poppies dominating the play, the Creeksiders continued to look a threat. Once again Stockford threatened to give the away side the lead 75 minutes in, but fine defending meant that Jones in goal wasn’t called upon.

With 80 minutes on the clock, the home side started to crank up the pressure on side sitting 16th in the table.

It began to look increasingly likely that it wouldn’t be the Poppies day, until striker Smith was given the chance to win the game 85 minutes in. However, he like Falco was un-able to beat McCarthy one on one.

A beautiful cross from the left by Poppies number 10 Fawzi Saadi was the home side’s final chance but no-one was able to get on the end of it.

The final whistle brought the end to an absorbing draw where the Poppies will go home disappointed they didn’t manage to find a way past the excellent McCarthy, whilst Fareham will be more than content with the away point they get to take back up the M27.

The Poppies will be hoping for better when they take on local rivals Christchurch this coming Saturday away from home.

Poppies: Jones, Aldhayan, Wensley (Langstone, 80), Spears, Elsom, Frost, Khider (Neronski, 59), Cooper (Cullen, 70), Smith, Saadi, Falco

Unused subs: Ohameje

Five star Poppies rout Bemerton Heath Harlequins

Report from Carlo Simone (@CSimoneJourno) at Victoria Park

Bournemouth bounced back from Tuesday night’s 4-1 defeat to Bashley by thrashing Bemerton Heath Harlequins in an entertaining encounter which featured six goals and three red cards.

A River Smith strike sandwiched in between two goals from Steve Flynn set the Poppies on their way in the first half, and whilst Bemerton got a goal back early in the second half, a further two goals from Dom Falco put a gloss on the scoreline.

Bournemouth started off very strongly, as a through ball from Harry Cooper played in Dom Falco, whose shot was saved by Matty Fredericks. The offside flag would have denied him anyway.

Falco had another chance a few minutes later as a defensive clearance played him in on the right-hand side, but his effort across goal was stopped by Fredericks’ outstretched leg.

The Poppies then had the ball in the back of the net, as an outside-of-the-foot pass from Fawzi Saadi found Steve Flynn in the box, and he rounded Fredericks to put it in. However, the offside flag was raised again.

The next time Flynn found the net, the goal stood. On 19 minutes a Ron Frost free-kick found the striker’s head, and he nodded in off the post.

Bournemouth, then imbued with further confidence, started to play some really intricate passing football, as well as completely nullifying Bemerton’s attacks.

Just 10 minutes after the first goal, a second followed, Saadi ran at goal and was tackled, but the ball fell nicely for River Smith who lashed it into the top corner from just outside the area.

Falco then had yet another opportunity to add his name to the scoresheet, but when the ball was worked over to him on the right-hand side, he could only fire straight at Fredericks.

The final chance of the half came to River Smith, whose long-range strike flashed just wide of the near post.

The 3-0 scoreline at half-time was no less than what Bournemouth deserved, but it was the Harlequins who came out fighting in the second half.

On 54 minutes a free-kick was headed onto the bar by the captain Scott Hassell, which then appeared to rebound off Sam Jones and over the line.

However, Bemerton undid their good work just a minute later as Jake Burgess was sent off for a late challenge.

That made Bournemouth’s task significantly easier, and they made the Harlequins pay just five minutes later.

Falco finally got past Fredericks, as he was slipped in and he finished low past the goalkeeper’s left-hand side.

The deteriorating weather then made it difficult for both sides to fashion chances, but Falco added his second in the 69th minute, as he converted from a Saadi cross.

Bemerton were close to adding a second in the last five minutes as Robbie Owen was played through on goal, but fortunately for Bournemouth he hit the side-netting.

River Smith then forced Fredericks into a diving save to deny his powerful strike.

The final action of the game was unfortunately not pleasant as Bemerton’s Robert Bladley and Bournemouth substitute Shiv Roushbaiani were sent off for scuffle.

The referee then blew the full time whistle a couple of minutes later, to confirm a comprehensive victory for Bournemouth and a return to winning ways.

Bournemouth Poppies brushed aside by Bashley blitz

By Dan Davis (@dan_davis20)

Bournemouth Poppies suffered a heavy home defeat at the hands of Bashley, who emerged comprehensive 4-1 victors at Victoria Park.

The visitors, who were yet to get the better of Poppies in the previous three encounters this season, dominated the first-half at the Winton-based ground and were rewarded with a three-goal cushion at the interval.

Dan Munday drilled home Bashley’s opener after only six minutes, before Cameron Beard blasted an effort into the roof of the net to pile further pressure on Poppies.

Dan Thompson then cracked an audacious drive inside the far corner on the stroke of half-time, further adding to the home side’s misery in spectacular fashion.

Hugh Dathan’s deflected strike wrapped up Bashley’s comprehensive victory mid-way through the second half, before Harry Cooper netted Poppies’ consolation inside stoppage time.

The Poppies management team opted for an unchanged starting line-up after his side’s 4-2 victory at high-flying Portchester at the weekend.

Veteran winger Fawzi Saadi return to the matchday squad, but was instead named among the substitutes with Ali Zintany and recent signing Dom Falco favoured on the flanks.

Ahead of kick-off at Victoria Park, a moving minute’s silence was held in remembrance of the life of Falco’s late brother, Kevin Peat, who sadly passed away two years ago.

The New Forest-based opponents flew out of the traps in the early stages of the clash, drawing a foul from Chia Khider which saw the full-back receive a caution after just two minutes.

The visitors continued to dominate possession on a slick surface, stringing together a number of flowing moves which regularly troubled the Poppies centre-backs.

On four minutes, Bashley’s Jack Smith lofted a delightful pass over the Poppies backline for Beard to latch on to. But with the angle tightening, the visitors’ frontman could only roll an effort narrowly wide of the far post.

Poppies had started slowly under the floodlights, and were duly punished on eight minutes.

An incisive ball cut through the heart of the Poppies centre-halves, allowing the prolific Munday to race through on goal and coolly slot into the bottom right corner with a deft flick of the right boot.

The home side immediately looked to draw level. Poppies captain Ron Frost lofted a delicate pass over the top for Zintany, but the wideman had slightly mistimed his run before pulling the trigger and was flagged offside.

Munday was involved at the pinnacle of another good move from Bashley on 13 minutes. Lewis Aimson hurtled towards the by-line and drilled an inviting cross across the face of goal, before Munday forced a strong block from a Poppies defender with a powerful drive from close range.

Zintany soon threatened to curl home the equaliser after racing towards the visitors’ penalty area, but narrowly bent an effort wide of the far upright.

Despite the near miss, Bashley continued to control the majority of possession and soon doubled their lead when another pin-point pass was met by Beard. The frontman calmly flashed a strike beyond Jones.

A corner kick from the visitors caused more trouble inside the Poppies penalty area. The lofted delivery was glanced across goal by Aimson, but Munday could only hook his attempt over the crossbar from a couple of yards out.

Poppies stalwart Frost almost showcased his prowess in dead-ball situations once again on 25 minutes. The skipper’s corner kick appeared destined to loop inside the near post, before Bashley goalkeeper Calum Ward punched clear under heavy pressure.

The following corner from Frost was then controlled superbly by Falco 12 yards from goal, but the winger couldn’t divert his effort towards goal.

The home side almost halved the deficit in spectacular fashion seven minutes before the half-time break. River Smith, who had recently slammed home Poppies’ clincher in the Bournemouth Senior Cup final, was almost the hero once again – but saw an audacious lob acrobatically hacked off the line by the backtracking Thompson.

Thompson then spectacularly rounded off Bashley’s first-half blitz. The towering defender collected possession 35 yards from goal, before unleashing an unstoppable drive that flashed beyond Jones, cracked against the inside of the post, and nestled in the back of the net.

At the half-time break, Saadi was introduced in place of Frost. The ex-AFC Bournemouth man was immediately involved in the action on 47 minutes, although his corner kick was narrowly diverted wide of the far post by Chris Speers.

Saadi’s back pass minutes later was then mis-controlled by Jones, although the Poppies shot stopper was able to recover before Munday could pounce in front of the empty net.

On 54 minutes, Munday breezed beyond the attentions of Manny Ohameje but had the ball stolen from his feet in the nick of time after Speers’ superb sliding challenge denied a shooting opportunity.

After Nasim Meddah replaced Falco, Munday once again squandered the chance to net a double. Another dangerous through ball was slid through to the Bashley ace, whose powerful strike stung the palms of Jones before being cleared.

Bashley soon found their fourth, however. Dathan was allowed to strike at goal unchallenged from distance, and the effort looped horribly in the air before drifting beyond Jones.

The home side almost recorded a consolation on 66 minutes, but Cooper’s diving header from Saadi’s inviting free-kick failed to trouble visiting shot stopper Ward.

Substitute Meddah then almost gifted Bashley a fifth on the counter-attack. The winger could only present possession to Beard on the edge of the penalty area, who raced forward and squared for Munday. The striker blasted over the crossbar from six yards, however.

Cooper threatened the Bashley goalmouth once again on 72 minutes, but his drive from 12 yards was comfortably fielded by Ward.

Beard and Munday came close to tucking home the visitors’ fifth – the former forcing Jones to parry a powerful drive away, before the latter fired high over the crossbar inside the six-yard box.

The home side ensured they had a spot on the score sheet in the first minute of added time, Cooper blasting home at the near post. The goal proved a mere consolation, however, and Poppies’ heavy defeat was confirmed at the full-time whistle soon after.

Poppies: Jones, Khider, Ohameje, Speers, Aldhayan, Zintany (Stacey, 66), Cooper, Frost (Saadi, 45), Falco (Meddah, 58), Smith, Flynn

Unused subs: Roushbaiani, Cullen

Bournemouth Poppies put four past AFC Portchester

Written by Carlo Simone (@CSimoneJourno)

Bournemouth Poppies came out on top in an entertaining six-goal encounter with high-flying AFC Portchester.

After a Steve Flynn effort had kept the fourth-placed Poppies level at half time, the striker got two more, alongside a River Smith strike, to help ensure a 4-2 victory.

It was AFC Portchester who had the most meaningful chance of the fixture, as their number 11 did well to collect a long ball forward, only to hit his effort straight at Sam Jones.

Jones was then unfortunately at fault for the opening goal, in an otherwise solid display, as Matt Simms’ long-range strike was spilled over the line.

However, Bournemouth responded to this setback perfectly, as just a minute later Steve Flynn headed smartly past the AFC Portchester goalkeeper from a weighted cross.

Both sides then fashioned several promising chances throughout the rest of the half.

Firstly, Flynn missed an opportunity to get his second, after hitting his effort well over after the ball was pulled back to him just inside the penalty area. Then captain Ron Frost did well to turn his man before seeing his shot trickle wide.

The Royals were still a threat though, as a cross from the left-hand side was agonisingly close to reaching their striker in the penalty area.

Frost then attempted another shot from range with a free-kick that hit the side-netting, before Portchester flashed a free-kick of their own wide.

That finished up the chances for the first half, but the tempo was ramped up in the beginning of the second half.

Jones was called into action in the 51st minute to superbly deny the Portchester number 7 who had cut inside and released a fierce strike,

The Poppies then took the lead for the first time just six minutes later, as Flynn nodded in a header from a long Ron Frost throw-in.

However, like in the first half, the team that took the lead were pegged back almost instantly.

The ball had fallen to Tuson-Firth on the edge of the area, who hit a thunderous volley past Jones to restore parity.

The game then took another twist just three minutes later, as after a Bournemouth corner had been cleared, the ball was lofted back into the box for River Smith to tap home.

There was no quick goal to follow that crazy four minutes, although Dom Falco fizzed in a cross to Flynn which was slightly behind the striker, so he was unable to connect with it properly.

AFC Portchester peppered the Bournemouth goal with many free-kicks in an attempt to equalise again, to no avail as the Poppies defended resolutely.

Flynn almost turned provider, as his header played in River Smith, but the goalkeeper came out quickly to block the effort.

Flynn wasn’t to be denied his hat-trick though and he took it in some style.

Ron Frost headed a ball forward on the halfway line which Flynn ran on to. He then brilliantly held off the defender and placed it past the goalkeeper to finish the game as a contest.

The final whistle blew a few minutes later, and Bournemouth could reflect on another impressive display.