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AFC Bournemouth: Tokelo Rantie's performances justify selection says Eddie Howe
Rantie, Cherries’ record signing, is yet to open his goal account for the club following his big-money move from Malmo in August.
The 23-year-old was on target for South Africa during their 1-1 draw with Morocco in an international friendly seven days ago.
It was his fourth goal in 15 appearances for Bafana Bafana, with Rantie having made four starts and one as a substitute in the Championship for Cherries.
Howe told the Daily Echo: “I was really pleased for him. It is always great when players go away on international duty and do well. He has looked really confident and good in training so I think the next step for him is to score for us.
“But I have been really pleased with his performances. He is adapting and getting to know us and our style of play with every training session so the signs are really positive.
“His goal against Morocco was a typical Tokelo Rantie strike and I am sure as our supporters get to see him and know him more, they will see what attributes he has and what he will bring to the team.
“He has been a creator of goals for us but I am sure, in time, he will be a goalscorer as well. It is an obvious statement to say you want your strikers to score.
"I have been really pleased with his performances and, his performances in general, have justified his selection. As long as he continues with all those bits and pieces we look for, the goals will come because he is a quality player.”
Meanwhile, Howe is expected to make a late decision on the fitness of several players ahead of tomorrow's clash at Nottingham Forest.
Shaun MacDonald, Ryan Fraser, Charlie Daniels, Lewis Grabban and Mohamed Coulibaly have all been receiving treatment in the lead up to the trip to the City Ground.
Flying winger Fraser, who was forced to withdraw from the Scotland under-21 squad, is one of Cherries' main doubts due to a persistent hamstring niggle.
The 19-year-old, who could have been a Forest target under former boss Alex McLeish, has been one of Cherries' star performers and is likely to be given until the last minute to prove his fitness.
Midfielder MacDonald, who also pulled out of international duty due to injury concerns, has trained this week and could be in contention providing he suffers no adverse reaction.
Goalkeeper Ryan Allsop returns after serving a one-match ban against Millwall, although Darryl Flahavan has been ruled out for between three to four weeks.
Fourth-placed Forest have Eric Lichaj and Nathan Chalobah suspended, with Guy Moussi and ex-Southampton star Dan Harding both added to their squad.
Cherries: (from) S Henderson, Francis, Cook, Ward, Harte, Fraser, Arter, Collison, Pugh, Rantie, Grabban, O'Kane, Hughes, Elphick, Surman, Pitman, Thomas, Daniels, Addison, McDermott, Jalal, Allsop.
Forest: (from) Darlow, Cohen, Lansbury, Hobbs, Collins, Cox, D Henderson, Majewski, Reid, Halford, Mackie, Abdoun, Jara, Derbyshire, Paterson, Moussi, Harding, de Vries.
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