By 90Min
July 01, 2019

2018/19 was by all accounts, a solid season for the Dorset based side. 

They easily survived relegation and registered impressive wins against Chelsea and Tottenham, while new signing David Brooks emerged as one of the most exciting young players in the Premier League. 

However, Bournemouth fans might be concerned by their form in the latter half of the season (11 defeat in 19) and the number of goals they conceded, which was the third most in the league. 

With this in mind, a few improvements are required if they are to better the 14th place finish last season and Bournemouth fans will perhaps feel, given the competitiveness of mid-table, they should be aiming for a top half finish. 

Listed below are a few areas the Cherries may need to strengthen if they are to reach this goal.

First Choice Goalkeeper

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When Bournemouth signed Asmir Begović from Chelsea in 2017, it seemed like a very logical transfer. He had a wealth of Premier League experience and had proven himself to be a reliable shot-stopper. 

Less than two years down the line, however, a series of poor performances led to him being dropped for Artur Boruc for most of the second half of last season, and his future at Dean Court is now uncertain.

At, 39, Boruc is hardly a long-term option and as a result, the Cherries have been linked with a host of goalkeepers, such as Burnley's Nick Pope and Tom Heaton, as well as Stoke's Jack Butland. Given Bournemouth's preference for British players, a move for one of these isn't beyond the realms of possibility. 

Strengthening in this area should be Bournemouth's No. 1 priority this summer and with the transfer window now open, they need to get a deal done.

Back-Up Striker

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Without any long-term injuries last season, Callum Wilson was finally able to show his true colours for Bournemouth, racking up an impressive 14 goals in 30 Premier League appearances.

Given his injury history, however, Bournemouth need a solid second choice striker. Lys Mousset and Dominic Solanke just aren't good enough at the moment. Solanke has yet to find the net for the Cherries while Mousset has scored just three goals in 58 Premier League appearances.

So who should Bournemouth move for? Brentford's prolific Neal Maupay could be an option. The Frenchman, who scored 25 goals in 43 Championship appearances last season, isn't an unrealistic transfer given Bournemouth's history of signing Championship players. 

Replacement for Simon Francis

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If there's one player that embodies Bournemouth, it would be Simon Francis. The captain, who has been with the club since they were in League One, has been a key figure in Bournemouth's rise to the Premier League.

That said, Francis will turn 35 next season and so, surely Eddie Howe is considering a long-term replacement. The Cherries already loaned Nathaniel Clyne when Francis was injured last season (although a permanent deal for Clyne is unlikely). 

Who represents a realistic transfer for Bournemouth? Everton's Mason Holgate, who impressed on loan at West Brom last season, could be a realistic option for the Cherries, although they may want to look abroad for someone of Premier League quality.  

Depth in Central Midfield

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Despite the return of Lewis Cook from his long-term injury, Bournemouth may still want to add more depth to their central midfield. Emerson Hyndman, Andrew Surman and Harry Arter aren't good enough for the Premier League, which leaves Dan Gosling as the only reliable option should Jefferson Lerma or Cook suffer an injury. 

Stoke's Joe Allen could be an option for the Cherries. The Welshman, who has a wealth of Premier League experience, would surely relish the chance of a return to the top flight and would provide quality back-up to Lerma and Cook. 

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