Bournemouth ‘on fire’ as they surge up to fifth

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Bournemouth have 16 points on the board after eight games of the Premier League season.

At this stage last season they only had four points from a possible 24.

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Eddie Howe’s youngsters smashed 10-man Watford 4-0 on Saturday to secure back-to-back wins in the Premier League as they’ve won five of their opening eight games of the season. In a week where the club revealed they aren’t moving ahead with plans to move to a new stadium and instead stay at their 11,000 capacity home at the Vitality, at least their ambition on the pitch shows how far they can go.

Howe was delighted with the manner of the win at Watford and believes his team are capable of beating anyone, on their day.

“We are very pleased with the result. This is a tough place to come and Watford have been in good form. It wasn’t the perfect performance but we are happy,” Howe told Sky Sports. “We believe we are capable of beating anyone when we are on top of our game. It is good that I think there is room to improve. We like to stay in the background and as underdogs. We will go about our work in a controlled way.”

Speaking to BBC Sport after the game, Welsh youngster David Brooks (who has now scored in back-to-back games) detailed the key to Bournemouth’s incredible start.

“Hopefully I can continue this form but the main focus was three points and we got that. As an attacking player you want to create and score as many as you can. The boys are on fire,” Brooks said. “I came here to prove I was good enough for the Premier League and I hope I am doing that.”

Brooks, 21, is certainly making a big difference and alongside Callum Wilson and Josh King they tore Watford apart as Christian Kabasele was sent off in the first half and gave a penalty kick away. The combination of pace and slick passing has seen Bournemouth begin this season by surprising many, but Howe and his players don’t seem that surprised with their form.

Bournemouth’s fixture list has been kind to them, as the only top six team they’ve faced so far is Chelsea, but they’re making the most of their fine early season form. This is their best-ever start to a PL season in their fourth campaign in the top flight and it has set them up for a decent run of games coming up.

Next up they have a South Coast derby against Southampton after the international break, then they play Fulham, Manchester United and Newcastle before facing Arsenal.

So, we could well be talking about Bournemouth making a sustained challenge to finish in the top six and qualifying for Europe between now and December. On this form, they could be the Burnley of 2018-19.

Bournemouth hammer 10-man Watford

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  • Bournemouth’s biggest away win in Premier League
  • Kabasele sent off, gave away PK
  • Two goals from Josh King
  • Cherries up to fifth in table

Bournemouth beat 10-man Watford 4-0 at Vicarage Road on Saturday, as the Cherries secured their biggest-ever away win in the Premier League.

Two first half goals from Josh King and another from David Brooks made it 3-0, then Callum Wilson made it 4-0 after the break as Watford’s Christian Kabasele was sent off as he gave away a penalty kick.

With the win Bournemouth move up to fifth in the table and have 16 points as they jump above Watford who remain on 13 points.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ] 

After a lively start to the game, the first key moment arrived as a free kick into the box saw Watford’s Kabasele flatten Asmir Begovic and was booked for his troubles.

Moments later Begovic saved Will Hughes‘ volley after a goalmouth scramble as the hosts settled well but then Bournemouth struck on the counter to take the lead.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]

Josh King flew down the left flank moments after Watford called for a handball in the box, and he found Wilson in the box but his shot was well saved by Ben Foster. However, Brooks was on hand to calmly slot home to put the Cherries 1-0 up.

Craig Cathcart somehow headed wide when completely unmarked at a corner, as the Hornets pushed hard for an equalizer. Wilson was then guilty of missing a big chance at the other end as he headed wide with the goal gaping.

Kabasele then took down King in the box and was handed a second yellow card as King scored the penalty kick to give Bournemouth a 2-0 lead and leave Watford with 10 men. And it got worse for Watford as King nodded home Wilson’s cross right on half time to make it 3-0. Game over.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ] 

In the second half it was a case of damage limitation for Watford but they conceded again within two minutes of the restart.

A cross from the left from Ryan Fraser found Wilson and he finished at the second attempt after being left wide open. 4-0. Troy Deeney and Etienne Capoue then had a disagreement on a sorry afternoon for the Hornets.

[ MORE: Premier League schedule ] 

Bournemouth eased to victory in the latter stages as they threatened to score more on the break, but Howe’s side settled for four goals and a clean sheet as their fantastic start to the season continues.

Bournemouth strike last in back-and-forth battle with Palace

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  • Brooks opened the scoring after 5′
  • Van Aanholt stole one back in 55′
  • Stanislas won it from the spot in 87′
  • Cherries rise to 7th; Eagles stuck in 13th

Bournemouth raced out to an early lead, watched it slowly but surely slipped away, then roared back to life during the game’s final 10 minutes to top Crystal Palace, 2-1, at the Vitality Stadium on Monday.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

The Cherries sent the south-coast faithful into raptures and took their lead after just five minutes, courtesy of David Brooks‘ first Premier League goal.

It started with quick build-up down the left side before Callum Wilson found himself on the ball near the top of the box. Laying it off for Brooks, to his right, was the easiest and most obvious play. The 21-year-old swung his left foot through the ball and banged it off the underside of the crossbar to make it 1-0.

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Bournemouth’s lead help up for 50 minutes — though it should have been longer than that. Patrick Van Aanholt brought Palace level in the 55th minute with an unstoppable strike into the ceiling of Asmir Begovic‘s net, but the Dutchman was more than a yard offside when Wilfried Zaha played the through ball. The assistant referee kept his flag down by his side, and the Eagles had a goal to show for all of their possession and pressure.

Bournemouth offered very little over the next half-hour and it was generally Palace who pushed hardest for a winner.

Palace’s rapid unraveling began in the 83rd minute, though, when Wilson went agonizingly close with a one-on-one chance, but Wayne Hennessey made a fine kick-save to deny him at the end of a breathless counter-attack. Hennessey was called into action barely 60 seconds later, as Wilson raced down the left side and served in a cross to Dan Gosling near the penalty spot. Gosling’s header was goal-bound, but Hennessey wouldn’t be beaten at full-stretch.

Seconds later, Bournemouth won a free kick nearly 40 yards from goal. Referee Mike Dean spotted Mamadou Sakho‘s forearm making contact with the head of Jefferson Lerma. Junior Stanislas, who had only entered the game as a substitute three minutes earlier, stepped up to the penalty spot and sent the ball down the middle as Hennessey dove to his left.

The result sees Bournemouth (13 points) reach seventh in the PL table, while Palace (7 points) remain stuck in 13th.

Watch Live: Bournemouth vs. Crystal Palace

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Eddie Howe and Bournemouth welcome Roy Hodson’s Crystal Palace to the Vitality Stadium Monday (Watch live, 3 p.m. ET on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com) as both teams look to close out Matchday 7 with three points.

The two teams played to a pair of dramatic 2-2 draws last season. Joshua King saved a point for Bournemouth last April on the south coast of England while Christian Benteke missed a 93rd minute penalty kick to squander a chance for Crystal Palace to win last December. This time around, we could see another four-goal thriller, with Zaha, Max Meyer, and Andros Townsend starting for the Eagles and King, Callum Wilson and Jefferson Lerma starting for the Cherries.

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Enjoy the match!


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Bournemouth hammer Leicester

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  • Fraser scored twice in first half
  • King added PK with Bournemouth 3-0 up  at half time
  • Cherries with 10 points from first 5 games
  • Bournemouth haven’t lost to Leicester in 7 PL games

Bournemouth battered 10-man Leicester City 4-2 at the Vitality Stadium on Saturday, with the Cherries demolishing the Foxes in the first half.

Ryan Fraser scored a superb double, then Josh King put home a penalty kick as Bournemouth were flying early on. Adam Smith finished things off late with a goal, but Leicester did score twice in the last two minutes of normal time. James Maddison scored a penalty kick and Marc Albrighton added another, but it was too little too late.

Eddie Howe‘s side were good value for their win as Leicester’s skipper Wes Morgan was sent off for a second yellow card 20 minutes from time to compound Claude Puel‘s misery.

With the victory Bournemouth move on to 10 points, while Leicester remain on six points and have three defeats from their first five games.

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Early on Fraser gave Bournemouth the lead with a beauty as he cut inside and curled home into the far corner. 1-0.

Leicester then came agonizingly close to equalizing as James Maddison’s deflected shot came off the bar.

That miss came back to haunt them as Fraser was slipped in by Callum Wilson and raced home before scoring his second through Kasper Schmeichel‘s legs.

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Before half time it got worse for Leicester as King then won a penalty kick via a handball and he slotted home.

Jamie Vardy‘s long-range effort almost looped in before half time, but Leicester looked stunned at the 3-0 scoreline.

In the second half King’s shot deflected off Harry Maguire and just wide, then Schmeichel acrobatically pushed a cross away.

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It was a case of damage limitation for Leicester in the end, despite Asmir Begovic denying Harry Maguire’s header and the Foxes having a few half chances on the break.

Leicester were reduced to 10-men late on the game to wrap up their miserable afternoon, with captain Morgan picking up a second yellow for a late challenge on Smith.

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Adam Smith then made it 4-0 as he finished off fine play from Fraser, then Leicester grabbed two consolations.

First, Maddison scored a penalty after Ricardo Periera was fouled. Then Albrighton scored a minute later to make it 4-2 and restore a smidgen of pride.