It’s simple. When I see Jordon Ibe’s name on the team sheet, my heart sinks. I convince myself that today is the day that the undoubtedly talented Ibe is finally going to show the Dean Court faithful what he can do.
But, somewhere in the back of my mind there is a little voice telling me I am only fooling myself. Then I replay his neat back heel to Surman and pass to Defoe against Brighton back in 2017 in my head and I convince myself again, that he will come good – today is the day.
But, that little voice gets louder and louder as kick-off approaches until it’s almost impossible to ignore. As the whistle blows I repeat in my head, He will be good, he will be good, he will be good. If he gets on the pitch of course. But, as soon as he touches the ball reality kicks in.
We know he can be good, but he so rarely shows what he has to offer. This is what makes watching him so frustrating, so irritating to watch. His last outing against Newcastle was a fine example. He’s not making the right decisions, he’s not making the right pass, he’s simply not making the right impression.
AAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH, FOR F*CK SAKE
A few expletives, or ten, are guaranteed to leave my lips when another pass goes array, when he forgets he needs to defend, when he tries to take on one player too many. But, then a few questions cross my mind. Why is he in the first team today? Do we really not have any better alternatives on the bench? Why hasn’t he got any better? Why hasn’t Eddie sent him out on loan?
We paid £15m for him, more than Brooks – and who do you think is better? But the fact is, the less he plays the more his value decreases in monetary terms and to the team. We can see there is a great player trying to get out and show himself, but it seems he can’t do it at AFC Bournemouth. We think he needs a spell at a side where he can get regular game time. If this means a move down a league to the Championship then that’s what he should do.
Ryan Fraser is a fine example of what it can do for a player. He went to Ipswich and came back a man, a player fit for the Premier League. Will it work for Ibe? There’s only one way to find out. No, not FIIGHT, but fight for a regular place in a team on the up. If he can prove himself in the Championship he will come back full of confidence, ready to show us what he can do. If he can’t then it might be time to sell.