Tag Archives: bournemouth

Tottenham v Bournemouth: 3 Key Battles That Will Decide The Match

Victory for Tottenham Hotspur against Bournemouth will all but secure their Champions League spot next season and these three battles will decide the outcome of the match at White Hart Lane.

Fraser v Davies

Tottenham Hotspur are without first-choice left-back Danny Rose once again this weekend, with Welsh international Ben Davies stepping in. Whilst he’s a capable player with bags of experience, he doesn’t have the same impact on the Spurs side that Rose has.

Therefore, the left-side of Spurs’ defence could be an area where Bournemouth look to exploit at White Hart Lane and the task will fall to 23-year-old Ryan Fraser, who manager Eddie Howe compared to Chelsea ace Eden Hazard this week.

With three goals and two assists in the Premier League, Fraser can certainly cause problems for Spurs’ defence and Ben Davies will have to be alert.

The game is being shown live on Sky Sports on Saturday afternoon (12:30pm kick-off UK time) and you can get a NowTV day pass and watch the game for just £6.29 with our fantastic 10% off a day pass offer.

Davies & Kane In: The Tottenham XI To See Off Bournemouth Tomorrow

Tottenham Hotspur are on-course to secure their place in the Champions League next year and finally finish above North London rivals Arsenal. Victory against Bournemouth this weekend should assure their position and this team can easily see off the Cherries.

GK: Hugo Lloris

Captain at White Hart Lane and a crucial player for the Lilywhites, securing a top-four finish was vital to keeping goalkeeper Hugo Lloris happy at the club and the success of Mauricio Pochettino’s side will ensure the French international stays on.

Spurs have conceded just 22 goals this season, the lowest amount in the Premier League, and Lloris has helped to shape the North London side from top-four hopefuls to title contenders. Big challenges await next year but Lloris will be able to ensure Spurs campaign this term continues on it’s fine path.

The game is being shown live on Sky Sports on Saturday afternoon (12:30pm kick-off UK time) and you can get a NowTV day pass and watch the game for just £6.29 with our fantastic 10% off a day pass offer.

Origi In, Mane Out: The Liverpool XI To Beat Bournemouth On Wednesday Night

Liverpool enjoyed a good weekend last time out, as the Reds beat Everton in the Merseyside derby and saw Manchester United, Manchester City and Arsenal all drop points.

The Reds therefore maintained third spot in the Premier League standings and have their hopes of Champions League football in their own hands, as they can keep in the top-four even if their rivals win their games in hand.

Having secured four points from clashes against Manchester City and Everton, Jurgen Klopp’s side are now preparing for a favourable run-in to the season but they’ll need to improve, having struggled against lower-end opposition this season.

On Wednesday, Liverpool host a Bournemouth side who defeated them on the South Coast earlier this season and the Reds will be keen on revenge. With Manchester United and Manchester City both facing stern tests this midweek, it’s an opportunity for Liverpool to strengthen their grip on a Champions League place.

Here, we’ve selected the Liverpool XI that Klopp should select to overcome the threat of the Cherries.

GK: Simon Mignolet

Liverpool’s goalkeeping ranks are the weakest section of their squad but Simon Mignolet has managed to retain his spot as number one despite the summer signing of Loris Karius. Whilst the situation may change in the summer, Mignolet should definitely start against Bournemouth.

The Belgian has started 20 games for Liverpool in the Premier League this season and needs to show the best of his ability if the Reds are to retain their spot amongst the top-four. That means cutting out the mishaps that have plagued him during his time in Anfield but he has the capability to do that.

Premier League Boss Confirms He’s Interested In Signing Jack Wilshere

Arsenal are set for major changes this summer and a host of big-names could leave the Emirates Stadium amongst a squad overhaul.

Whilst the Gunners have been public in their desire to keep 25-year-old Jack Wilshere, the England international is rapidly approaching the final 12 months of his contract and is seeking first-team assurances before he puts pen-to-paper on an extension.

Having struggled during recent years with a wealth of injury problems, Wilshere has impressed on-loan with Bournemouth and Cherries boss Eddie Howe has confirmed he’d like to sign the midfielder on a permanent deal this summer.

However, interest in the Arsenal academy graduate is high and Wilshere’s signature this summer could fetch a premium price.

What’s been said?

Quoted by The TelegraphHowe said after the weekend’s goalless draw with Southampton:

“I’ve always said we would love to sign him. But that decision will rest with Arsenal. He’s played so many games. This is just a little spell where he’s been out of the team but he’s still coming on to great effect.”

Is Bournemouth the right fit?

Jack Wilshere may have found his feet in Bournemouth but moving to the Cherries on a permanent basis could effect his chances of making the England squad next summer, where Wilshere will aim to represent the Three Lions at the World Cup.

Moving to a bigger side may end up being the best course of action for Wilshere and he has options ahead of him, with The Sun stating this weekend that West Ham will offer £30m to Arsenal and give the midfielder the opportunity of remaining in London.

Wilshere could also have the option to move abroad, with The Daily Mail stating last month he’s open to a move to AC Milan- where he’d follow in the footsteps of former England captain David Beckham, who spent successful loan spells in Italy with the club.

Manager Confirms Premier League Defender Will Be Moving To Chelsea This Month

Chelsea look set to welcome another defender to their squad this month, with the club keen to add to their defensive options.

It appears that Antonio Conte will continue to favour playing young players over external recruitment with the Italian manager seemingly set to recall Nathan Ake from his loan at Bournemouth.

Ake has been brilliant during his loan spell at Bournemouth so far, and with Conte now deploying a 3 at the back formation, Chelsea would really benefit from having another central defender in the squad. Despite the clubs overall good defensive displays, Gary Cahill has come under a fair amount of criticism and Ake may have his eyes on displacing the Englishman.

Another option would be to shift Cesar Azpilicueta to the right or left wing-back role and then bring Ake into central defence. Crucially Ake’s recall will give the club more options and more depth.

Bournemouth boss Howe said Ake’s exit was “not 100% finalised yet”. But in saying that, all but confirmed that he would be heading back to the capital.

He told BBC Radio Solent: “It would be a huge blow to us as he’s done so well. It is easier said than to done to say we are going to go and recruit a player of a similar stature to Nathan.”

Chelsea will now be negotiating with Bournemouth for a cancellation fee, as it is likely they will have to pay one due to cutting the season-long-loan deal short.

Howe added: “I am not sure there are too many out there, hence why Chelsea would recall him. With Simon Francis’s suspension and Marc Pugh’s injury and now Nathan going back, our defensive resources are certainly stretched.”

Ake turns 22 next month and will hope to continue his progression this season at Chelsea. The player is also capable of playing in midfield and at left back, so his versatility will certainly come in handy for the club.

In 10 Premier League appearances Ake has netted 3 goals, highlighting his ability to attack well and make the most of opportunities in the other box. For his height, he’s very good in the air, winning on average 2.07 per 90 minutes in the Premier League this season. He’s also won an impressive 1.82 tackles per 90.

An energetic defender, Ake has also made 1.22 interceptions per 90. He’s a defender that is more than capable of playing out from the back and his pass completion of 88% highlights that.

Summer signing David Luiz has really excelled in the defence since re-joining the club, but with Cahill now 31, could Ake be the England international’s long-term replacement? He’ll certainly hope so.

What is refreshing to see is a manager that is willing to give young players a chance, and Conte seems to be doing just that.

‘He Must Be Drunk’ Arsenal Fans Slam This Man Following Out Of Character Display At Bournemouth

Arsenal somehow managed to rescue a point at the Vitality Stadium on Tuesday night against Bournemouth, despite being 3-0 down with just twenty minutes to go. 

Right-back Hector Bellerin was at fault for the first goal when Charlie Daniels picked up the ball just inside the box. The Bournemouth man Bellerin with ease before finishing under the body of Petr Cech to fire the hosts into the lead.

Eddie Howe’s side were two goals to the good just a few minutes later. Ryan Fraser surged into the Arsenal box before Granot Xhaka carelessly bundled the midfielder over. Michael Oliver pointed straight to the spot. It was Callum Wilson who stepped up to give the home side a two goal lead.

The Cherries were in dreamland on the other side of half-time. Ryan Fraser beat Hector Bellerin to the ball, although there were suspicions of a foul, Fraser burst into the box and finished under Cech to put Bournemouth three up.

Things couldn’t have got much worse for Arsenal and Arsene Wenger as they looked to be heading for their third straight away league defeat. However, they were given a lifeline with twenty minutes to go. Olivier Giroud flicked the ball on for Alexis Sanchez to nod in at the back pots. It was game on again at the Vitality.

Just five minutes later, Lucas Perez scored a stunner to close the deficit to one. Giroud was the creator again, laying the ball off to the striker, who powered an excellent shot into the corner from a difficult angle past Artur Boruc.

Bournemouth looked as if they were going to see the game out, but it was Man of the Match Giroud that rescued Arsenal a point. The ball was hoisted into the box and the Frenchman rose the highest, turning his header into the back of the net to give the Gunners the unlikeliest of points.

Hector Bellerin had a terrible game, one of his worst in an Arsenal shirt. He was at fault for the first, and arguably the third too. There have been suggestions that the right-back is still struggling with a previous ankle injury, but that takes nothing away from how awful his display at Bournemouth was.

Despite crossing the ball three times, Bellerin won 0% of his tackles, 0% of his aerial duels and didn’t complete a single take on. Here is how Arsenal fans reacted on Twitter to Bellerin’s terrible display.

The fans have suggested that Hector must have been drunk, but Wenger has since confirmed that the Spaniard was one of a number of players to be playing the game with slight knocks.

Player Ratings: AFC Bournemouth 3-3 Arsenal

These are Fresh Football’s ratings for Arsenal’s away clash versus Bournemouth in the Premier League.


Artur Boruc – 5.5

Rarely brought directly into action by Arsenal, the ex-Celtic stopper had little chance in stopping the efforts that did hit the target.

Simon Francis – 6.5

A solid performance that was later blemished by a red card for a late tackle on Aaron Ramsey.

Steve Cook – 6.5

Reliable for the most part, but his performance faltered as Lucas and Alexis Sanchez joined Giroud centrally.

Charlie Daniels – 8

An excellent first half, and game in general, coupled with a goal that could’ve sent Bournemouth on their way to a historic victory in the Premier League era.

Junior Stanislas – 7

Worked the channels well and threatened Čech’s goal on a few occasions. A real handful.

Dan Gosling – 7

Another lung-bursting performance from the box-to-box midfielder, although Gosling is sure to look back on his left footed effort in the latter stages of the game that could’ve regained Bournemouth’s lead.

Harry Arter – 7

The industrious midfielder didn’t disappoint, with his pressing proving priceless in rocking Arsenal to their core in the first half.

Ryan Fraser – 9

Direct and explosive, Fraser dug Bournemouth out from Arsenal’s spells of possession on the counter en route to scoring the Cherries’ third of the night. A constant threat out on the left flank that proved to be a huge bonus to the Gunners’ once he limped off.

Joshua King – 6

Plenty of industry provided from the man partnering Callum Wilson in attack, supporting counter-attacks and back-tracking at every given opportunity to help out his team.

Callum Wilson – 6.5

Claimed good ground in behind Arsenal’s defence with regularity. Overall, it was a good performance, more noteworthy for his work rate than anything else.


Andrew Surman – 5.5

Came on to regain some control in the second half, which worked initially prior to Bournemouth amplifying the score line to 3-0, but the deep-lying midfielder and his team were caught retreated in their own half for far too long after Fraser’s goal.

Adam Smith – N/A

Brad Smith – N/A

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Petr Čech – 4.5

Question marks have begun rounding the veteran goalkeeper in recent weeks, and the former Chelsea man was again partially culpable in a game that saw Fraser score with a cheeky finish through his legs at the near-post.

Héctor Bellerín – 4

Among his worst performances in an Arsenal shirt, as all three of Bournemouth’s goals originated from Bellerín’s right flank.

Shkodran Mustafi – 4.5

There was a real lack of synergy in the backline awaiting Mustafi in his return to the first team. Often naïve in possession and made to look silly by the in-form Fraser, the German can at least polish up his invincibility record following Olivier Giroud’s late equaliser.

Laurent Koscielny – 4.5

Left chasing shadows for the best part of the game, with it being unclear whether his early substitution was related to any knock picked up in battle.

Nacho Monreal – 4.5

The 30-year-old has made steady progress on his form in recent weeks, but the likes of Stanislas looked adamant to bring Monreal back to square one, with varied success.

Francis Coquelin – 3.5

Struggled to impose himself early on versus Bournemouth’s pressing game and an injury midway through the first half robbed him the time to rectify that order.

Granit Xhaka – 5.5

His general play was decent, and Xhaka can even claim the assist from Giroud’s equaliser, but the penalty given away in the 20th minute does little to clear up his erratic image, meanwhile proving to be costly to his team.

Aaron Ramsey – 5

Fashioned a few half-chances for himself going forwards, but, clearly, he’s no Mesut Özil.

Alex Iwobi – 4

Nothing in this one from Iwobi, who might well be feeling the effects of two games in three days. Offered the rare hope for an Arsenal goal in the first half, but struck the ball wide.

Alexis Sanchez – 6

A very fiery version of Alexis Sanchez was on show again, as the Chilean dug deep to follow-up Giroud’s flick-on and kick-start Arsenal’s comeback in the 70th minute.

Olivier Giroud – 6.5

Even underperforming, Giroud came up big when it mattered most, assisting Sanchez for Arsenal’s first of the night and grabbing the headlines for himself with a late equaliser. Yet another clutch moment for the Frenchman this season.


Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain – 6

Not so inspirational going forwards, but Oxlade-Chamberlain did come up with a crucial 11th hour intervention on Fraser, as the Scot eyed up his second of the night one-on-one with Čech.

Lucas Perez – 6

Noteworthy in most build-ups late on and the proud owner of the goal of the night, driving in a left-footed volley from an acute angle.

Gabriel Paulista – 5.5

Steadied the ship a little at the back, though a deeper block from the home side made sweeping up possession a lot easier the Brazilian, but Gabriel was on hand to support the Gunners’ aerial threat that eventually earned them two goals.

Report: West Ham ‘Preparing’ £25million Offer For Premier League Ace

With the January transfer window right around the corner, clubs  are preparing themselves to sign the right players, whether that be to push them for the league title or to guide them to a European place / relegation freedom.

One rumour in England that has caught everyone’s eye is that West Ham United are apparently preparing to offer up to £25 million for Bournemouth hot shot Callum Wilson once the transfer market reopens in January, according to the Guardian.

The Hammers have been injury riddled thus far this season with injuries to the likes of Andy Carroll and a fresh injury to Diafra Sakho, which will see the West Ham forward miss six weeks. They’re stretched for depth in the forward department, with England born Wilson leading the list of potential incomings to reduce the problems for Slaven Bilic.

After fighting hard for a European place last season, their poor start to the season see’s the Londoners just one point ahead of the relegation zone after struggling to settle into their new home after leaving Upton Park.

Summer signings Simone Zaza and Jonathan Calleri have struggled to settle in the Premier League and are both shadows of what abilities they posses, with the former coming under strong criticism from the Irons faithful with a new petition going around with fans willing to pay for his flight back to Turin.

Although West Ham are willing to offer up to £25 million for the striker, Bournemouth will remain resilient and not flirt with any ideas of a sale for their top goal scorer, especially after the start they have made sitting 12th in the league after some great displays. After rejecting a £15 million offer from West Ham back in May, it’ll be interesting to see what happens after the player signed a 4 year contract in July.

Wilson himself seems happy in Bournemouth and is a key player to Eddie Howe’s impressive project, he would certainly challenge the likes of Zaza and Calleri to become number one at West Ham but we take a look at how he compares with the Hammers forwards.

Playing the number 9 role is all about scoring goals, of course. But, in modern day football you are also relied upon to create chances too with Zaza coming out on top in this trait by creating 1.56 chances per 90 minutes thus far this season, Wilson is in second place with 0.72 with Hammers man Calleri third 0.65.

Speaking of more responsibilities than just scoring goals in the number 9 role, assists is another key ability to possess as an attacking player and the attacking trio are yet to manage a single assist between them in the league with 13 games gone, which, to be honest is quite a worrying stat to say the least.

When you receive the ball in between the lines as a striker you can often be expected to pick up the ball and run at the defence. Zaza again impresses significantly with successful take on’s managing 60% with West Ham compatriot in second place on 50%, Cherries man comes last in this race with 26.32%.

Of course, now the most important trait deadly strikes must carry, goals. Bournemouth hot shot Wilson annihilates his two opponents in this genre with 0.41 goals per 90 minutes thus far, with both West Ham players hitting blanks, scoring zero goals so far this league campaign. This is one stat which will certainly sparkle in Bilic’s eye as goals for the London side have dried up, and Wilson will certainly add to that.

At 24-years-old, Wilson would be an immense purchase for West Ham, he is still young and will only improve as times goes on. The problem for them is, Eddie Howe will be reluctant to sell and has no need at all, after the TV money injection last summer clubs the size of Bournemouth are in no need or desperation for money, money which 5 years ago they would only dream about.

The plus side for Hammers fans is the club look set to sign a striker in January, but in my honest opinion I don’t think they will persuade Bournemouth to sell, better yet, I do not think Wilson will want to leave either with his current club currently in a promising place under the talented Eddie Howe.

‘He Needs To Start Every Week’ Arsenal Fans Impressed With Midfielder In 3-1 Win vs. Bournemouth

Arsenal had to respond on Sunday after a couple of back to back draws in the Premier League had seen them slip slightly away from the leading pack in the Premier League. 

The Gunners are still unbeaten in all competitions since the opening day of the season, though they were 6 points behind leaders Chelsea before hosting Bournemouth on Sunday afternoon.

Arsenal managed to close that gap to just 3 points following a 3-1 win. Arsene Wenger opted for some tactical changes after poor midfield performances in recent weeks. With Granit Xhaka and Mohammed Elneny at the base of the midfield and Oxlade-Chamberlain and Theo Walcott back on the wings – Alexis also started the game up front. Arsenal played well for the most part, particularly in the 2nd half. The Arsenal fans had been calling for new summer signing Granit Xhaka to play more regularly and today’s performance shows why they are so keen to see more of their new central midfielder.

In Santi Cazorla’s absence, Arsenal have lacked a playmaker in deep areas, someone who is assured on the ball and can pass both long and short. Xhaka is this kind of playing and whilst he is not as technically gifted as Santi, he does have a stronger and taller frame, giving him obvious advantages in central duels.

Xhaka’s statistics on the day help back up my point. He completed a very impressive 90.4% of his passes on the day and had 76 touches during the 90 minutes, more than any other Arsenal player on the pitch. Defensively he was sound, making a huge 9 tackles, winning 1 aerial duel and making 3 interceptions. He showed his quality with a long ball too, attempting 4 and reaching his target twice. One that sticks in my mind was a brilliant long ball over the top for Giroud, although the Frenchman’s control saw the chance end.

Xhaka’s 52 passes were more than any other Arsenal player and this shows how he is becoming more settled in the team and more relied upon amongst his teammates. He is the conductor and in Cazorla’s absence it is very important that Arsenal have a player of this ilk in the centre of the park.

Here’s what the fans are saying about the Swiss international’s performance on Sunday. 

In my opinion I would agree with the general consensus on Twitter that Xhaka is an important part of the starting XI and he should certainly start in the absence of Santi Cazorla. Even when Cazorla is out I think Xhaka is the best all round central midfielder that we have at the club and his physical attributes make him an important part of the line-up.

Premier League Team Of The Week: 2 Chelsea, 2 Arsenal, 1 Everton & 1 West Ham Player Feature

Maarten Stekelenburg – Everton

Well, I doubt Stekelenburg has quite had a performance like he did at the Etihad stadium in his whole career. The 34-year-old was absolutely fantastic for his club and saved two penalties which he made look routine, there comes a stage in the game where City must have thought they weren’t going to score, he was near on unbeatable between the sticks and was unlucky not to keep a clean sheet which he thoroughly deserved.

César Azpilicueta – Chelsea

Reverting back into right-back in a back three seemed to be very more comfortable for Azpilicueta, we have seen him occupy the left-back position more often than not in recent seasons but he looked very much at bay in his new (old) position in the back three and showcased a solid performance against the Premier League champions.

Azpilicueta gained possession nine times against the Foxes, more than any other Blues player and helped his side keep a clean sheet.

Winston Reid – West Ham United

Finally, West Ham gets back to winning ways after an impressive display at Selhurst Park in their 1-0 victory over Crystal Palace.

Winston Reid was very impressive and was solid at the heart of the Hammers defence which went on to help the club keep a clean sheet on away soil, in a tough physical battle against Christian Benteke Reid come out on top overall and helped his side take the three points, a exceptional performance.

David Luiz – Chelsea

Much like Azpilicueta, Luiz found himself in a back three under Conte’s new formation for the Blues which inevitably worked. Luiz was absolutely sublime during the course of the 90 minutes and gave the Foxes hitman Jamie Vardy a very tough afternoon after pocketing him quite comfortably.

He won his duels, swept up any attacks and played the ball efficiently from deep, a solid display whilst nearly getting him-self on the scoresheet…. At both ends.

José Holebas – Watford

Scored an absolute thunderbolt striker in Watford’s 1-0 victory over Middlesbrough, scoring form outside the box to the top left hand corner of the goal giving the goalkeeper no chance.

Holebas was efficient going forward and was just as instrumental defensively giving the Boro’ players a very tough afternoon after a superb performance.

Joe Allen – Stoke City

Joe Allen has been majestic all season and is single handily winning games for the Potters, three goals in four games thus far for the Welsh Pirlo whilst being a real nuisance for the opposition to cope with.

He has kick started his career after having a tough time under Jurgen Klopp at Liverpool and is slowly becoming one of the most key players in Mark Hughes squad, and if the Stoke man can keep up his consistent form I can certainly see himself get in double figures for the season.

Manuel Lanzini – West Ham United

West Ham looked much back to their old selves against Crystal Palace on Saturday evening and star of the show was their majestic Argentinian Lanzini who was a real problem for Palace all game.

He scored a well taken goal and drifted between the attack midfield and winger role throughout, he retained possession up the pitch with a 90% pass accuracy and linked the attack and midfield exquisitely making four key passes whilst having two shots, both of which tested the keeper and one paving out to be the winning goal.

Dele Alli -Tottenham Hotspur

Dele Alli scored Spurs’ equalizer as the North Londoners remained unbeaten thus far this season. The English international caused havoc all afternoon and tested the West Bromwich Albion goalkeeper numerous times, including one beautifully taken goal in the second half, showing composure and coolness whilst being surrounded in the penalty area.

The 20-year-old has become key in the Spurs’ side and has continued to shine again this season, scoring in back to back Premier League games for the first time since April 2016 he is starting to find his goal-scoring boots again.

Mesut Ozil – Arsenal

After a slow start to the Premier League campaign Mesut Ozil is starting to pull the strings again for the Gunners and has started to add more goals to his game too.

The German international has been excellent in recent weeks and scored the winning goal in the exhilarating 3-2 victory over Swansea, his winning goal come from a volley after a perfect ball from Alexis Sanchez, a partnership that could see Arsenal go far this season.

The Arsenal playmaker completed 53 of his attempted 58 passes against Swansea in the opposition half, as always brilliant.

Theo Walcott – Arsenal

Is this the year Theo Walcott finally shows his worth? The Arsenal forward score two well taken goal, and show have had a hat-trick or even four goals after hitting the post / crossbar twice in the 90th minute.

Walcott has often come under strong criticism for not nailing down a starting position for the Gunners on a consistent basis, but after a summer of hard work he looks set to score double figures this season.

When he is in this form he is arguably impossible to defend against, something Arsenal will relish in the coming months.

Junior Stanislas – Bournemouth

Bournemouth or Barcelona? After their comfortable 6-1 demolishing of Hull it didn’t look like a side that would be in a scrap for survival come the end of season, maybe they won’t?

Stanislas was the best of the bunch scoring two goals and also grabbing an assist in there massacre of the Tigers.

The Bournemouth man could have scored more after hitting the woodwork and going close on another occasion during the game after an exceptional performance by the Cherries forward.

Transfer Window Rankings (8th-5th): Watford, Arsenal, Middlesbrough and Bournemouth Feature

As two of the most free-spending managers in football history, José Mourinho and Pep Guardiola, paved way for the arrival of more high-profile managerial switch-a-rounds, it’s perhaps no surprise to see Premier League clubs shatter the records of expenditure once more with a £1.165 billion bill, surpassing the £870 million mark set just last season.

In its trail, the relentless cash burning has left a bunch of euphoric agents, players and, for the most part, many satisfied fans with the acquisitions made by their favourite clubs. Some teams went about their business better than others, however.

Fresh Football has already brought to you those ranked as 20th – 17th, 16th – 13th & 12th – 9th, leaving us with eight more Premier League clubs in our power rankings to go through. Here are the those who’ve just missed out on our top four.

8th – Watford

Key Incomings: Roberto Pereyra (£11m), Isaac Success (£12.75m), Daryl Janmaat (£7.5m), Christian Kabasele (£5m), Stefano Okaka (£5m), Younes Kaboul (£3.4m), Camilo Zúñiga (Loan), Brice Dja Djédjé (£3m), Kenedy (Loan).

Key Outgoings: Miguel Layún (£5m), Mario Suárez (Loan), José Manuel Jurado (£1.2m), Allan Nyom (£4m), Ikechi Anya (£4m), Matej Vydra (£8m), Almen Abdi (£3m), Daniel Pudil (Free).

There’s a great sense of intrigue surrounding Watford’s new boss Walter Mazzarri, who starred for Napoli in command of Edinson Cavani, Marek Hamšík and more before an underwhelming spell at Inter Milan in 2013. As the Hornets took on Arsenal and Chelsea in two of their first three Premier League encounters, the Italian manager could only pluck one point from a possible nine so far, but the squad currently at his disposal could well give the London club an excellent chance at a swift recovery.

Juventus midfielder Roberto Pereyra stands as the biggest name to walk through the door at Vicarage Road, with the Argentine already impressing versus Arsenal following his £11 million move. The impact made in the same game by record signing Isaac Success also gives Mazzarri food for thought with regards to his options up top.

On the topic of forwards, Watford’s ability to hold onto Odian Ighalo and Troy Deeney can be seen in a positive light, despite the astronomical offers that reportedly surfaced, whereas the likes of Daryl Janmaat, Kenedy and Christian Kabasele could all prove to be handy options for Mazzarri’s famed 3-5-2 formation.

7th – Arsenal

Key Incomings: Granit Xhaka (£38m), Shkodran Mustafi (£35m), Lucas Pérez (£17m), Rob Holding (£2.5m), Takuma Asano (£3.5m), Kelechi Nwakali (£3m).

Key Outgoings: Jack Wilshere (Loan), Calum Chambers (Loan), Joel Campbell (Loan), Wojciech Szczęsny (Loan), Serge Gnabry (£4.25m), Mikel Arteta (Retired), Tomáš Rosický (Released), Mathieu Flamini (Released), Jon Toral (Loan), Dan Crowley (Loan), Isaac Hayden (£2.5m).

The primary targets for Arsenal in the transfer window were to sign a defensive midfielder, a striker and a centre back, all of high calibre. After endless pleas from fans and public figures alike, the Gunners managed to do just that, to an extent at least.

Borussia Mönchengladbach’s Granit Xhaka is sure to add the blend of attitude, defensive and technically progressive capabilities the north London club has been crying out for in defensive midfield throughout the years. There can be few complaints over the arrival of Shkodran Mustafi as well; a 24-year-old, 13-time Germany international who adds both greater physical capabilities and composure that the likes of Per Mertesacker and Gabriel Paulista naturally can’t pair up.

The arrival of 27-year-old Lucas Pérez is a little trickier to theoretically suffice, however, but if his recent 17-goal season for Deportivo de La Coruña is anything to go by, then he’s a welcome addition to those in the goal scoring department.

6th – Middlesbrough

Key Incomings: Viktor Fischer (£4.25m), Álvaro Negredo (Loan), Antonio Barragán (£2.3m), Víctor Valdés (Free), Calum Chambers (Loan), Adama Traoré (Undisclosed), Bernardo Espinosa (Free), Gastón Ramírez (Free), Fabio Da Silva (£2m), Brad Guzan (Free).

Key Outgoings: Albert Adomah (Undisclosed), Jonathan Woodgate (Released), Adam Reach (£5m), Rhys Williams (Free), Mustapha Carayol (Released), Damia Abella (Released).

Aitor Karanka’s Middlesbrough side have been amongst the most lauded of Premier League sides for their transfer activity and it’s easy to see why. Notably, the ex-José Mourinho assistant manager has filled in the gaps of his team with various compatriots, which should facilitate both the players’ and the club’s transition to the Premier League from a tactical perspective.

Álvaro Negredo had 23 goals to his name in his debut season at Manchester City in 2014, whereas Víctor Valdés adds a wealth of experience to Middlesbrough’s backline, strengthened further by the likes of Antonio Barragán from Valencia and Sporting Gijon’s Bernardo Espinosa.

Boro have also managed to lure in Calum Chambers on loan, a good deal for all concerned, meanwhile there’s a fair deal of excitement that should be reserved for the arrival of ex-Ajax man Viktor Fishcher and former Barcelona starlet Adama Traoré, both players who should be keen to make positive strides in their promising careers.

5th – AFC Bournemouth

Key Incomings: Jack Wilshere (Loan), Jordon Ibe (£15.3m), Lewis Cook (£6m), Nathan Aké (Loan), Emerson Hyndman (Free), Brad Smith (£3m), Marc Wilson (£2m).

Key Outgoings: Matt Ritchie (£10.2m), Tommy Elphick (£3.2m), Lee Tomlin (£3m), Sylvain Distin (Released), Glenn Murray (Loan).

It’s hard to look beyond the deadline day signing of Jack Wilshere on loan from Arsenal, a player who, if fit, sees him become an addition of the highest order at the Vitality Stadium. His progressiveness and creativity in the middle of the park will be invaluable to Bournemouth, whereas he also has his fair share of experience, despite a turbulent time with injuries.

Ex-Liverpool man Jordon Ibe will be tasked with replacing Matt Ritchie, who joined Newcastle United for £10 million. If the talented winger can add consistency to his game, arguably costly in his abrupt exit from Anfield, then Bournemouth have yet another big player on their hands for the forthcoming season.

There’s bags of potential in the signings on Nathan Aké, loaned out by Chelsea once more, Emerson Hyndman from Fulham and £6 million man Lewis Cook, making the Cherries a team to pay very close attention to.

Official: Arsenal Approve Stunning Deal For Midfielder On Deadline Day

Some Arsenal fans may have even kept their faith in Arsène Wenger through the dimmest of times with regards to strengthening the side with a defender and striker, but very few would have seen the reported demands imposed by fan favourite Jack Wilshere coming.

With the £34 million signing of Granit Xhaka from Borussia Mönchengladbach adding itself to the likes of Aaron Ramsey, Santi Cazorla, Mohamed Elneny and Francis Coquelin, the avenue of the injury-ravaged Wilshere to first-team football has been complicated further.

As outlined by the BBC, Wilshere expressed his desires late in the transfer market to leave the club on loan, with Arsenal acquiescing to his wishes. The offers have since come pouring in to take the 24-year-old midfielder, a list of clubs headlined by AS Roma, A.C. Milan, Bournemouth and Crystal Palace.

Both the player and the club have made their decision, which, according to Sky Sports News, will see Wilshere become a Cherries player by the end of the day. Has the right choice been made?

The England international might well have fought his way into the Arsenal first XI, providing he stayed fit this season, but a temporary switch to Bournemouth will, of course, offer the highly-regarded playmaker greater guarantees of first-team football.

Roma’s proposition is also sure to have attracted Wilshere and Arsenal in terms of his development, embracing a different culture of football, but with the Italians already well stocked in the central midfield position with the likes of Daniele De Rossi, Radja Nainggolan, Leandro Paredes and co., the scenario wouldn’t prove to be too different to the one currently experienced at the Emirates Stadium.

A move to Bournemouth sees Wilshere remain within the confines of Premier League football, playing for a side befitting of the Englishman’s expansive style of play. The fact the Arsenal academy graduate has ended up in the hands of Eddie Howe could also be quite telling for the future, with the English manager tipped on more than one occasion to be Wenger’s successor once the latter calls time on his managerial career.

Should Bournemouth line-up in a 4-3-3 formation, utilised against Manchester United and Crystal Palace this season, the Arsenal man is likely to relieve some of the pressure imposed upon new signing Lewis Cook this summer.

In the 14 games played by Wilshere last season for the Gunners, the England international averaged a better passing accuracy (84%) than Cook’s 79% meanwhile starring for Leeds United in the Championship. His other midfield counterparts, Arter and Surman, averaged 86% and 85% respectively, going some way into demonstrating the Cherries’ ability to cater to Wilshere’s style.

None of Howe’s options prove to be as threatening in front of goal as Wilshere, who registered a 67% shot accuracy in 2015/16, whereas the playmaker also scored more league goals (two) than any of the current candidates, despite the shortage of games due to injuries.

The 24-year-old also manages to convey the combative nature of Surman and, in particular, Arter, who won 42% and 47% of their duels. Wilshere tops that with 51%, demonstrating versatility that is sure to be welcomed with good grace at the Vitality Stadium. However, Wilshere’s injury woes remain his greatest enemy and the most likely factor that could derail what looks every bit like a huge upgrade in calibre for a developing side like Bournemouth.

Player Ratings: West Ham United 1-0 Bourenmouth

Here are Fresh Football’s ratings for the Hammers first Premier League game at the London Stadium against Eddie Howe’s Bournemouth.

West Ham United

Adrian – 7.5

Cannot remember him touching the ball in the first half. Had more to do in the second-half though, great save on the 52 second minute to deny king followed by two brilliant reflex saves in stoppage time.

Sam Byram – 7

Solid defensively and offensively, put in some dangerous crosses but was booked for some rash tackles.

Winston Reid – 6.5

Very quiet first half but was solid against a quick attacking line, had plenty to do in the second half and continued to be dominant at the back.

James Collins – 6.5

Much like Reid, quiet on the defensive front in the first half, but composed on the ball and had the better of his man.

Arthur Masuaku – 7

Very good first start for the left-back, kept Ibe at bay and was solid defensively, was always an outlet going forward too.

Havard Nordtveit – 6

Strong in the middle of the park and kept things ticking, struggled a bit in the second half as Bournemouth found new life.

Cheikhou Kouyate – 7

Played as the box to box midfielder with Nordtveit sitting, supported the attack and defence well, all round good performance.

Gokhan Tore – 8

Brilliant play and skill on the right flank and often got the beating of his marker. nearly scored an acrobatic volley in the 58th minute and assisted brilliantly in the 84th, after getting the better of his man and putting in a perfect cross.

Mark Noble – 7.5

Was at the heart of most things in the first half and struck some quick counter attacks with exquisite passing, was more quiet in the second half but another good game from the Hammers captain.

Michael Antonio – 8.5 (MOTM)

Playing in midfield after his horror show against Chelsea at right back, was ok in the first half but did switch off at times, touch wasn’t great but was always looking to make something happen. Scored the winning goal in the 84th minute heading in Tore’s cross which saw him just edge his West Ham teammate (Tore) to MOTM.

Enner Valencia – 6

Quiet and frustrating afternoon for Valencia, was kept at bay by the Bournemouth defence and certainly didn’t do enough as a lone striker.


Artur Boruc – 6

Made a few good saves and more or less dominated his area, could not do much for Antonio’s goal.

Adam Smith – 5.5

Did not support the attack like he did last week and was a rare outlet for Ibe, had his hands full with Antonio.

Simon Francis – 6.5

Very solid first half, often had the ball and tried to build up the play, much the same in the second.

Steve Cook 6.5

Much like Francis, was good on the ball and did not give the West Ham attack a sniff on the ball.

Charlie Daniels – 5

Had a very tough afternoon against Tore who got the beating off him to regular.

Jordon Ibe – 5.5

Frustrating first half, always looked positive on the ball and looked to run his man, needs to release the ball quicker. In the 50th minute he hesitated to shoot and fluffed his pass.

Harry Arter – 4

Was very quiet in the first half and got himself sent off for two ridiculous yellow cards, Howe will be fuming.

Andrew Surman – 6.5

Found it difficult to control the game as Nordtveit and Kouyate dominated the middle of the park, come more to life in the second half and was at the heart of the midfield battle.

Ryan Fraser – 5.5

Byram kept him quiet in the first half but the winger certainly showcased his speed at times, much the same in the second half too.

Callum Wilson – 5

Poor first half, did not create anything and was easily marked out of the game, was a passenger again in the second half.

Joshua King – 6.5

Likewise, similar to Wilson in the first half, poor showing from the striker. Came to life in the second half and saw a brilliant shot saved in the 52nd minute, he nearly got the Cherries a point in the 92nd minute but a fine save from Adrian again denied him.


Jonathan Calleri – 5

Was anonymous apart from missing a one on one in the 94 minute.

Ashley Fletcher – N/A

Pedro Obiang – N/A

Lewis Grabban – 4

Did not do much when he come on.

Nathan Ake – N/A

Dan Gosling – N/A

Prediction: How Well Bournemouth Can Perform This Season

After a brilliant debut season in the Premier League, Eddie Howe faces the difficult task of ensuring Bournemouth do not suffer second-season syndrome.

Howe has been linked to take over from Arsene Wenger next season with the Frenchman’s contract expiring at the end of the season. To have any chance of taking such a big job, Howe will not only need to ensure Premier League survival for the club, but perhaps even guide his side to a midtable finish.

Howe has the potential to take this team to the middle of the table as they quite comfortably avoided relegation last season and the signs show that they can continue to progress this time around. Bournemouth are becoming a well respected Premier League club due to their fearless attacking approach. With official sponsors like Mansion Casino, the club is growing and hoping to establish itself as a club comfortable in England’s top flight.

There is no reason they cannot do that. The clubs £15 million capture of Jordon Ibe, a player many Liverpool fans considered to be the next big thing, highlights the clubs buying power now they are competing in the cash-rich Premier League.

Although they lost Matt Ritchie to Newcastle, Bournemouth have managed to retain the nucleus of the squad that not only took them to the Premier League but kept them there. As Leicester City showed last season, it is not always he glamorous big money signings that ensures success. A strong team bond and identity is more important and that is exactly what the team has at Bournemouth.

Many forget that Bournemouth were missing a whole host of top class players last season due to long term injuries. The biggest absence was that of striker Callum Wilson, who finished as the clubs top goal scorer despite getting injured just two months into the season. He is back now and so are the likes of Max Gradel, a player that could potentially be key for the clubs attack.

Ibe is not the only addition Howe has made too. He brought in Lewis Cook from Leeds for £10 million earlier in the summer and has more recently made the shrewd additions of Lys Mousset – an exciting young forward and Marc Wilson – an experienced solid defender.

I predict that despite their two defeats against Manchester United and West Ham, Bournemouth will be comfortable in the Premier League again this season. I think they can improve on last seasons results with the likes of Ibe and Cook now in the midfield. It will not be easy by any means with every single match a tough task, but I’m predicting a 15th placed finish for the Cherries.

Player Ratings: Bournemouth 1-3 Manchester United

Here are the Fresh Football match ratings for the game between Bournemouth and Manchester United.


Arthur Boruc: 6.5 – some fantastic saves throughout and wasn’t really at fault for any of the goals conceded, but showed nothing that made the mouth truly water.

Adam Smith: 7 – fantastic work ethic and scored a fantastic left footed shot that seemed to deceive David de Gea, solid start for the Bournemouth right back.

Simon Francis: 5.5 – Bournemouth’s new skipper had a mare in the build up to Mata’s opening goal essentially gifting him the ball on two occasions. Certain he will come good.

Steve Cook: 6 – nothing noteworthy in a naturally poor day for both Bournemouth centre halves.

Charlie Daniels: 6.5 – very much alike Adam Smith, an incredibly hard working full back. Showed real promise down the left hand side on a number of occasions.

Lewis Cook: 7 – perhaps Bournemouth’s best player, promising debut from the youngster who often bossed the midfield against one of the top teams of the division.

Harry Arter: 7 – Eddie Howe’s men always appear strongest in midfield and Arter personifies this. Will be crucial in the Cherries’ survival bid this campaign.

Andrew Surman: 6.5 – replicating the energy of the entire midfield, often solid but found himself over ran by the United midfield on certain occasions.

Jordan Ibe: 6.5 – in an attempt to justify a £15 million price tag I would say Ibe got off to a pretty decent start adding even more pace and depth in a Bournemouth side that already look rapid on the break.

Josh King: 6.5 – an average performance against his old side and didn’t really show half the outlet showed against United last December.

Callum Wilson: 6 – some good quality runs but the United defence kept him quiet for the majority of the match.


Lewis Grabban: 7 – bagged the assist after coming on in the 68th minute and naturally made a positive impact to the team with his fresh legs.

Benik Afobe: 5.5 – very much like Callum Wilson in the sense that he didn’t tend to offer much up front in a firm and organised United back four.

Max Gradel: N/A

Manchester United

David de Gea: 7 – nothing really noteworthy from the United keeper and was often left with nothing to do except prohibiting a late onslaught from Bournemouth. Couldn’t do a lot with Adam Smith’s beautiful finish in the 67th minute.

Antonio Valencia: 8 – personally one of my contenders for Man of the match. After a fantastic pre season he’s emulated that form into the start of the campaign. Looked threatening down the right side, supplying plenty of quality service for the likes of Ibrahimovic and supplied the ball in the build up to Wayne Rooney’s well directed header.

Eric Bailly: 8 – my other contender for man of the match. In such a fast paced league such as the Premier League, you have to keep your head and he has settled into life well at Old Trafford and has remained consistent in his first appearances in a United shirt. Looks incredibly comfortable on the ball, a certain young talent to look out for over the course of the season.

Daley Blind: 7 – nothing noteworthy from Blind in a positive or a negative light and dealt with the vast majority that was thrown his way. Thriving off of his best trait: consistency.

Luke Shaw: 7 – solid start after nearly a year out on the sidelines with a double leg fracture. Making some good runs and is peaking at full fitness ahead of a long season.

Ander Herrera: 7.5 – kept the game ticking throughout when United had to soak up a lot of Bournemouth pressure. Suits the Mourinho style of football to a treat and feel he will thrive under the new regime.

Marouane Fellaini: 6.5 –

Anthony Martial: 6.5 – despite bagging 2 assists it definitely wasn’t one of Martial’s most flattering games as a United player. After a lack of game time at the Euro’s, it just looked slightly flat at times with his attempts to get in behind defenders often quashed by the Bournemouth defence. He’ll be looking to improve on this in a bid to replicate last seasons electric form.

Juan Mata: 7 – despite countless articles speculating Mata’s future under Mourinho, it appears he has a future in this United side after kick starting the new United era with their first premier league goal this season.

Wayne Rooney: 7 – another man whose subject to criticism and speculation is the United skipper himself. He played in the no. 10 role this afternoon and it is no doubt his best position. After a slow start, his distribution and leadership qualities prevailed, which saw him redirect a Martial shot/cross beautifully past Artur Boruc. He will want to prove a point this season.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic: 7.5 – of course this man had to have a say. He started slowly alongside Wayne Rooney in an attempt to adjust to the Premier League pace but came good in the second half. Fancy flicks and impeccable strength are just standard Zlatan traits, topped off a solid first shift with a tremendous 25 yard strike. United fans will hope of more of the same from the big man.


Henrikh Mkhitaryan: N/A

Memphis Depay: N/A

Morgan Schneiderlin: N/A