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OPPOSITION IN FOCUS: AFC BOURNEMOUTH

31 May 2018

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AFC Bournemouth will contest their fourth consecutive Premier League campaign in the 2018/19 season.

Our rundown of Brighton & Hove Albion’s Premier League opposition for the 2018/19 campaign begins with fellow south coast side AFC Bournemouth.

AFC Bournemouth

League Position 2017/18: 12th 

Top league goalscorer: Callum Wilson (8) 

How did they do last season?

The club’s third consecutive season in the top flight ended with the side comfortably clear of the bottom three places in the league table. 

The start to the season was one which saw Eddie Howe’s men pick up just two wins in their opening 10 matches, but just one loss in 10 contests thereafter from the end of December soon had the Cherries looking up the table rather than over their shoulders. 

That impressive run saw a trio of home victories over Arsenal, Chelsea and Everton respectively, and propelled them up to what would be a season’s high ninth position.

Wins over West Bromwich Albion, Swansea City and Burnley followed towards the end of the season, sealing a fourth Premier League campaign for the club.

Who’s in charge? 

Eddie Howe is a cult hero on the south coast, having enjoyed two spells with the club as a player. He took up the managerial post in January 2009 as the side won promotion from League Two.

He would then move to join then Championship side Burnley in 2011 and return to AFC Bournemouth in October 2012, guiding them into the Premier League for the first time in the club’s history at the end of the 2014/15 season.

Who should I keep an eye out for?

Callum Wilson’s eight goals across the campaign were undoubtedly vital in helping Howe’s side steer clear of the bottom three as the season progressed. 

A hat-trick in the 4-0 home win over Huddersfield Town was followed by strikes against West Ham United, Arsenal, Chelsea and the Seagulls, before he notched away to Burnley on the final day of the season at Turf Moor to hand the Cherries a final day victory. 

How did we fare against them last season?

The Seagulls met Howe’s men three times over the course of the campaign. The first contest between the two teams arrived in mid-September at the Vitality Stadium where the home side ran out 2-1 winners. 

Solly March fired Albion in front midway through the second half, but goals from Andrew Surman and Jermain Defoe handed the hosts victory with two-goal in six second half minutes. 

Four days later the sides met again at the home of the Cherries in the Carabao Cup second round, as Josh King’s goal put AFC Bournemouth into the third round.

The sides met on New Year’s Day at the Amex Stadium, and Anthony Knockaert fired the Seagulls into an early lead with the side’s first goal of 2018. 

Former Albion player Steve Cook headed the visitors level at the other end, before Glenn Murray restored Chris Hughton’s side’s advantage after the break.

But Albion were left to rue a slice of misfortune as the ball bounced around the area before deflecting off Wilson to mean the spoils were shared in a 2-2 draw.


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