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AFC Bournemouth: We are making steady progress says Harry Arter
The midfielder was speaking after Cherries had been handed another harsh lesson as Birmingham sentenced them to an ill-deserved 2-0 defeat on Saturday.
First-half goals from Andy Shinnie and Nikola Zigic earned the Blues a third successive away victory – in a contest which saw the hosts dominate for long periods.
An inspired display of goalkeeping from Darren Randolph, coupled with some errant finishing, saw Cherries suffer a fifth home reverse of the campaign – one more than the whole of last season.
Arter told the Daily Echo: “There is no reason to panic and, if any supporters want to create that, it is up to them because we can’t control people’s opinions. Nobody said this season was going to be easy and we feel we are doing the right things.
“There are some bigger teams than us doing a lot worse and, if there is any panic here, I don’t know what it must be like at their clubs. We would have taken where we are now at the start of the season and would have bitten off someone’s hand for it a year ago.
“We are above the two other promoted teams so it is not as if we are going backwards and they are moving on and leaving us behind. I don’t know what people expected this season and whether they expected us to go up again. I don’t think the experts would have predicted that and I think we are doing what was expected of us.”
Arter, speaking candidly about Cherries’ first 20 games in the second flight, added: “We know there is still a lot to learn for the team. There is a bit of naivety and we are still getting to grips with the Championship.
“But I think performances have definitely improved since the start of the season and it is a steady progression. We know we need to start turning one win into two and three if we want to move forward.
“We were by far the better team from start to finish against Birmingham but we gave away two sloppy goals. Their goalkeeper stood tall and did really well when, on another day, we would have won comfortably.
“Top teams and players take their chances at this level. The stats show we have created more chances in most of our games but, for some reason, we haven’t been putting away as many as the opposition. We know we need to be more clinical.”
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