Bournemouth manager Scott Parker has explained why Ethan Laird was left out of the squad on Tuesday night.
The Manchester United loanee, who left Swansea City in January to join promotion chasing Bournemouth, wasn’t part of the matchday squad that drew 1-1 at home against Championship struggles Peterborough United.
Jack Stacey started at right-back with Adam Smith ruled out due to suspension, but Jaidon Anthony was brought on in the same role near the end of the game.
That suggests there is significant competition for places at right-back at Bournemouth, and prematurely may lead to questions, like: Why did United take Laird out of Swansea City where he was playing every week?
Parker explained his decision in an interview with Bournemouth Echo, saying: “He just wasn’t in the squad. I just feel that he needs work.
“He needs a bit more work really to get to the levels of what we ask of our full-backs, to get to the level for him to perform at his optimum and us to all see the best Ethan Laird.
“So that was a decision I made, for him to do that.”
Parker added: “I’ve explained the situation to Ethan. He understands it as well. He gets it.
“He’s been out for a long time. He’s come into the football club and not kicked a ball or been in training for a long time, because obviously he came here injured and then picked up another injury.
“So we just need to take some air with him, take some oxygen. Want him to relax and I just want to do the best by him and get him in a place where he is going to be the player that we signed.”
United chiefs were probably hoping that Laird could experience winning a title by spending a few months at Bournemouth, but what good is that if he isn’t playing football?