Bournemouth on brink of historic promotion to Premier League

Eddie Howe’s team can only be denied by virtually impossible swing in goal difference

Bournemouth 3 Bolton 0

Bournemouth will play in the Premier League next season for the first time in their 116-year history after cruising past 10-man Bolton 3-0 in front of a disbelieving Dean Court.

Eddie Howe’s men were cut adrift at the foot of the Football League in 2009 but only a virtually impossible swing in goal difference on the final day on Saturday would deny the Dorset-born manager from clinching the third promotion of his career with the Cherries.

A thumping finish from Marc Pugh put them one up before Matt Ritchie's snapshot gave them a comfortable cushion at the break. Dorian Dervite was sent off for a foul on Callum Wilson, who then added the gloss to the most famous night in the club's history in the 79th minute to spark wild scenes on the south coast.


Having shown signs of nerves in a forgettable first half against Sheffield Wednesday last time out, Bournemouth wasted no time in attempting to break down their visitors.

Smashing it across

But it took them until six minutes before the break to the deadlock. And it was a goal to remember for the disbelieving supporters who had to be held back by the stewards after Pugh dragged Ritchie’s cross to his left-hand side at the back post before smashing it across goal and into the top corner for his ninth of the campaign.

Premier League supporters tuning in to see what the fuss is all about ahead of August will have witnessed a 44th-minute goal that sums up when Bournemouth are all about. Wilson clipped a cross to the back post which Kermorgant effortlessly knocked down for Ritchie to drive, first time, into the bottom corner.

Their ecstatic fans were singing the Match of the Day theme tune and they were almost celebrating a goal fit to grace the show's goal of the season reel when Yann Kermorgant noticed Bogdan off his line 35 yards from goal but the keeper managed to tip the Frenchman's effort over. Kermorgant then missed a penalty after Wilson was brought down, but with 11 minutes to go Wilson rounded off a fine individual performance with Bournemouth's third goal.