CHERRIES boss Eddie Howe has tasked his players with keeping more clean sheets after another momentary lapse cost them dearly against Burnley on Saturday.

Howe’s men were denied what would have been an impressive scalp when they switched off to allow Keith Treacy to score to earn the Clarets a share of the spoils at Dean Court.

Treacy profited following a deflected cross from Ross Wallace and levelled after a goal credited to Tokelo Rantie had given Cherries the lead six minutes into the second half.

Cherries had also been pegged back when they drew 1-1 at Turf Moor in November with Danny Ings capitalising on some defensive hesitancy to score a late equaliser.

Despite keeping three clean sheets in their first seven games in the Championship, Cherries have managed only one in their past 23 games – against Yeovil on Boxing Day.

Howe said: “We should have won, like we should have at Bolton, and the next part of our progress is to be winning games like this. You need that ruthless quality to see out games 1-0. It was a game of tight margins. We got the first goal and, usually, that has been enough this season to win but it wasn’t the case.

“We feel we certainly should have more points than we have. Our performances in general have merited that so that is always a good sign and, hopefully, we can continue to improve and turn these draws into wins.

“We felt we nullified their threats in the two games against them. We are disappointed because we had the lead in both games and you would like to think that would have been enough to get you at least one win.

“I thought their only chance was the goal and that was the frustrating thing. The next challenge for us is to keep more clean sheets because we can score goals but are conceding them too regularly.”

The clash went ahead after the pitch had passed an early morning inspection, although a testing playing surface and a swirling wind made life difficult for both teams.

Howe added: “We knew it was going to be very difficult to play our normal way so we adjusted our tactics and changed our system and style of football.

“The change was effective but it wouldn’t be the way I would always want to play.”

“We saw some good things and some good attempts to play in what were dire conditions. It affected both teams and it definitely affected the usual quality of game we see here at Championship level and both teams had to adapt.”