Bournemouth boss Andoni Iraola is sweating on Dominic Solanke’s fitness after the striker limped off with an ankle injury late on in the 2-0 win over Stoke at the Vitality Stadium.
Striker Solanke was brought on at half-time to reinvigorate Bournemouth and put his side ahead six minutes after coming on.
Joe Rothwell smashed in a free-kick to confirm the Cherries’ spot in the fourth round – where they will host Liverpool – but Solanke was replaced with five minutes to go to sour the evening.
“Dom has played well,” said Iraola, of his top scorer. “We needed a change of energy and the whole of the team had a different attitude in the second half.
“Unfortunately, he couldn’t finish the game, that was probably the worst part of the evening.
“We will see tomorrow if the ankle is swollen or not but we have a very tight schedule so it will be tough for him to play at the weekend.”
Former Liverpool forward Solanke controlled a low cross from Adam Smith before finishing with a neat swivel for his fourth goal of the season.
Three minutes later, the Cherries were in complete control when Rothwell’s free-kick from the left side of the box escaped everyone’s touch and bounced into the bottom corner.
It was the midfielder’s first goal since arriving from Blackburn before last season.
Iraola was happy to progress but not to be up against Jurgen Klopp’s Reds in the next round.
The Spaniard said: “We wouldn’t have chosen Liverpool, for sure, but I think we have to make them play a good game and come here and beat us. It isn’t an easy draw.”
Stoke manager Alex Neil was angered by some naivety before Solanke’s goal.
The Scot said: “I thought we competed really well for the majority of the match.
“First half there wasn’t a lot in the game which is summed up by them bringing two strong attacking players on at half-time.
“You could see at the start of the second half that they visibly upped the tempo and the lads that came on are naturally good players and got the fans behind them.
“I think the biggest disappointment is that when you are playing Premier League players you can semi-accept that you can get undone by quality play but the first goal for us is so frustrating.
“We gave the free-kick away and then after that we kicked the ball back to them, we weren’t set and the ball ends up in the back of the net.
“All the hard work we’d done in the first half was wasted because of the lapse of concentration and naivety.
“If you take the game in its entirety in terms of just playing I thought we competed and was good in spells.”