Premier League
BournemouthAFC Bournemouth3NorwichNorwich City0

Bournemouth 3-0 Norwich City

By Chris OsborneBBC Sport
Dan Gosling celebrates
Dan Gosling's opener was his first home goal of the season

Bournemouth easily overcame relegation rivals Norwich City to move five points clear of the bottom three.

The Cherries led when Dan Gosling headed in Marc Pugh's cross.

Bournemouth wanted a penalty when Russell Martin held back Charlie Daniels in the area, and Norwich keeper Declan Rudd was fortunate not to be sent off for fouling Benik Afobe.

But Vadis Odjidja brought down Pugh to allow Daniels to score from the spot before Afobe rounded off the win.

It ended a four-game winless run in the Premier League for Eddie Howe's men, who climb above their opponents into 15th.

Relive Bournemouth's win over Norwich

Read all of Saturday's Premier League reaction

And it could have been more for the Cherries

Pugh v Jarvis touches
On the left are Marc Pugh's touches for Bournemouth, on the right are Matt Jarvis's touches for Norwich

It was Norwich who came into the game in better form, having won three of their past five matches in the league, but this was a worrying performance against a side who came up with them from the Championship last season.

And the scoreline could have been even more emphatically in the home team's favour had referee Robert Madley decided to award a penalty for Martin's attempt to hold on to Daniels in the area, or opted to show Rudd a red card when the keeper clipped Afobe on his way through to goal.

It turned out the Cherries did not need the assistance of the official.

The tireless Pugh had already provided a superb cross for Gosling to nod in at the back post.

And in the second half Daniels, who was tremendous throughout, added an assist to his converted penalty by skipping past two Norwich players and sliding in a cross that allowed Afobe to poke in his first goal since joining from Wolves in a £10m move.

Afobe a clever purchase?

Benik Afobe is fouled by Declan Rudd
Benik Afobe had three shots in the game and made three key passes

Norwich were reportedly among the clubs interested in signing Afobe in this transfer window, and they saw first hand at Dean Court that the 22-year-old has the strength, pace and finishing prowess to make an impact in the top flight.

The former Arsenal forward, who had scored nine Championship goals already this season, regularly held off Norwich's centre-half pairing of Sebastien Bassong and Ryan Bennett, laying off the ball to bring team-mates into the game.

He outpaced the Canaries back four on his way to being clattered by Rudd in the first half, before picking the perfect place in the six-yard box to collect his first Premier League goal in the second.

Bournemouth did not even need to use their returning striker Lewis Grabban, a £7m signing from the Canaries this week, as the striker was said to be ill and watched the game from the stands.

Where do Norwich go from here?

There were few positives for Norwich to take away from the south coast, as they dwell on back-to-back defeats in the league that leave them four points above the bottom three.

Canaries not good enough - Neil

Their only chance of note was an opening for Dieumerci Mbokani, whose attempted lob drifted 10 yards wide of goal.

Alex Neil's side defended horribly at times, with full-backs Martin and Robbie Brady too often beaten by Bournemouth's widemen.

And the hosts could have added to their tally if Rudd, who was fortunate to still be on the pitch, had not pulled off sharp saves in the second half from Pugh's mazy dribble and shot as well as Steve Cook's header.

Man of the match - Charlie Daniels

Charlie Daniels
A goal, an assist, should have won a penalty and continuously up and down the left side from full-back. Norwich could not keep hold of him.

What they said

Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe: "It was the perfect afternoon in many ways.

Any win is so valuable - Howe

"Any win in this league is so valuable and the players produced an excellent, assured performance.

"We knew the importance of this month going into it and today is a big step. We've got Sunderland next week and the games just keep getting bigger."

Norwich manager Alex Neil said: "We didn't deserve anything from the game, but we won't start buying people left, right and centre just because we lost the match.

"The transfer plans are in place, and we don't make decisions like that on the back of one game.

"Bournemouth were the better side. We didn't do enough with the ball and we got caught out by a couple of things we spoke about before the game, so that's disappointing."

The stats you need to know

  • Bournemouth have scored more goals in the opening 15 minutes of Premier League games (seven) than any other side this season.
  • Norwich are the only Premier League side yet to keep a clean sheet away from home this season.
  • Dan Gosling has scored three goals in the Premier League this season, his best tally in a single Premier League campaign.
  • Norwich City have conceded a league-high 14 goals from crosses this season.
  • Robert Madley has awarded 10 penalties in 15 Premier League games this season, more than any other referee.
  • Bournemouth have been awarded 20 penalties in league football since the start of 2014-15, more than any other team in the top-four tiers of English football.
  • Benik Afobe has scored 33 league goals since the start of 2014-15 - only Sergio Aguero (36) and Daryl Murphy (35) have more in the top four tiers in this period (Harry Kane, Odion Ighalo and Andre Gray also have 33).

What's next?

Bournemouth travel to 19th-placed Sunderland on Saturday, in another big relegation game. Norwich host Liverpool on the same day, looking to avoid a third consecutive defeat in the league.

Line-ups

Bournemouth

Formation 4-1-4-1

  • 1Boruc
  • 15A Smith
  • 2Francis
  • 3S Cook
  • 11Daniels
  • 6Surman
  • 19Stanislas
  • 4GoslingSubstituted forKermorgantat 90+2'minutes
  • 8ArterBooked at 48minsSubstituted forO'Kaneat 80'minutes
  • 7Pugh
  • 20AfobeSubstituted forMurrayat 84'minutes

Substitutes

  • 12Iturbe
  • 16MacDonald
  • 18Kermorgant
  • 23Federici
  • 25Distin
  • 27Murray
  • 32O'Kane

Norwich

Formation 4-4-1-1

  • 13RuddBooked at 43mins
  • 5Martin
  • 24Bennett
  • 6Bassong
  • 12Brady
  • 32Odjidja-OfoeSubstituted forRedmondat 56'minutes
  • 27Tettey
  • 8Howson
  • 16JarvisSubstituted forJeromeat 56'minutes
  • 14HoolahanSubstituted forDorransat 69'minutes
  • 9Mbokani

Substitutes

  • 1Ruddy
  • 3Wisdom
  • 10Jerome
  • 18Dorrans
  • 21Mulumbu
  • 22Redmond
  • 23Olsson
Referee:
Robert Madley
Attendance:
11,065

Match Stats

Home TeamBournemouthAway TeamNorwich
Possession
Home45%
Away55%
Shots
Home15
Away10
Shots on Target
Home8
Away3
Corners
Home5
Away3
Fouls
Home8
Away13

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Bournemouth 3, Norwich City 0.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Bournemouth 3, Norwich City 0.

  3. Post update

    Ryan Bennett (Norwich City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  4. Post update

    Foul by Glenn Murray (Bournemouth).

  5. Post update

    Foul by Cameron Jerome (Norwich City).

  6. Post update

    Marc Pugh (Bournemouth) wins a free kick on the left wing.

  7. Post update

    Foul by Alexander Tettey (Norwich City).

  8. Post update

    Glenn Murray (Bournemouth) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  9. Substitution

    Substitution, Bournemouth. Yann Kermorgant replaces Dan Gosling.

  10. Post update

    Foul by Alexander Tettey (Norwich City).

  11. Post update

    Eunan O'Kane (Bournemouth) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  12. Post update

    Corner, Norwich City. Conceded by Simon Francis.

  13. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Robbie Brady (Norwich City) left footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked.

  14. Post update

    Corner, Norwich City. Conceded by Simon Francis.

  15. Post update

    Dieumerci Mbokani (Norwich City) wins a free kick on the right wing.

  16. Post update

    Foul by Steve Cook (Bournemouth).

  17. Substitution

    Substitution, Bournemouth. Glenn Murray replaces Benik Afobe because of an injury.

  18. Post update

    Delay over. They are ready to continue.

  19. Post update

    Delay in match Benik Afobe (Bournemouth) because of an injury.

  20. Substitution

    Substitution, Bournemouth. Eunan O'Kane replaces Harry Arter.