By 90Min
September 08, 2019

As the international break arrives like an underwhelming Christmas present from an obscure relative, Bournemouth fans will at least least have chance to pause and reflect on the start that their side has made to to the Premier League season. 

The Cherries are sat 15th in the table with four points from their opening four matches; picking up a win at Aston Villa as well as a hard fought point against Sheffield United. However, there have been chastening defeats to Leicester City and Manchester City in the mix. So after their first flurry of matches, where exactly do we stand with the progress of Eddie Howe's men?

All is revealed below...


Best Player

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Harry Wilson has made an impressive start to life as Bournemouth player. The Wales international has already bagged two excellent goals and has done well to plug the considerable gap left in Howe's midfield, as injury decimated the Cherries' ranks going in to this season. 

Wilson excelled in the Championship with Derby County last season and looks to have comfortably transitioned to a higher, more demanding level of football this campaign. 

His free kick against Manchester City was top class and while Bournemouth have that weapon in their arsenal, the on-loan Liverpool winger could be a frequent and very useful match winner. The Leicester City match was the only blemish on his copybook thus far, as he failed to impose himself and was hauled off after just over an hour on the pitch. 


Worst Player

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It feels a tad harsh to throw Adam Smith under the bus. The full-back hasn't been abysmal by any means; but his ineffective performances have seen him beaten by his man far too often already this season. His miss against City at home was dire as well, even for an old school right-back.

He's also developed a troublesome habit of failing to stop balls into the box from his flank, and his positional play can be a touch off at times for an experienced defender. 

Bournemouth have already shipped eight goals, so perhaps their whole back four deserve an honourable mention here. Sooner or later, they will need to find a way to stop shipping goals with such ease and frequency. 


Best Performance 

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Bournemouth's first away day of the season ended in a decent 2-1 win over Aston Villa, and a convincing display to boot. 

The Cherries were excellent in the first half, and they comfortably looked a class above the promoted side. Their forward line moved the ball with pace and purpose with impressive work off the ball, as Harry Wilson and Ryan Fraser intelligently stretched the play and had Villa overloaded on each occasion they pressed forward. 

This was the good stuff we've got used to seeing over the past four season from Howe's Bournemouth. 


Worst Performance 

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That aforementioned drubbing by Leicester takes this gong. 3-1 rather flattered Bournemouth, who were comfortably beaten by the better side. After a bright start to the match, Howe would have been disappointed to see his side fade away and fail to create anything of note in the second half. 

Jordon Ibe and Dominic Solanke looked poor coming off the bench as well, which will be a concern given the current injury pandemic gripping the club (and the hefty fees handed to Liverpool for both). 

The less said about some of the defending the better – it really was too easy for Leicester to get in behind and overload the Bournemouth back line throughout. There is a lot of work to be done there for Howe and his team. 


Best Goal 

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It has to be Harry Wilson's gem of a free kick against Manchester City. The 22-year-old curled the ball with wonderful precision and technique, over the wall and straight in to the top left corner. Ederson could do nothing but watch as his clean sheet went west and the ball rippled into the top corner.


Rating 

Ross Kinnaird/GettyImages

It feels like Groundhog Day at the moment for Bournemouth. They are technically an excellent side, and Callum Wilson should continue to thrive with the level of service and quality behind him if Bournemouth keep on doing what they're doing.

However, only two teams have shipped more goals than the Cherries after just four games. They do look a little bit light on mentality too, fading away at home to Manchester City and completely falling apart against Leicester – all after conceding late on at home Sheffield United on the opening day to drop points. 

They should be fine but they may well be looking over their shoulders quite a bit this season.

Rating 5/10

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