Premier League
BournemouthAFC Bournemouth4MiddlesbroughMiddlesbrough0

Bournemouth 4-0 Middlesbrough

By Neil JohnstonBBC Sport
Benik Afobe scores for Bournemouth against Middlesbrough
Bournemouth scored four goals or more in a Premier League game for the third time this season

Middlesbrough's hopes of avoiding relegation suffered a major setback as they lost heavily at Bournemouth after playing for 70 minutes with 10 men.

Midfielder Gaston Ramirez was sent off after 20 minutes for two bookable offences - one for diving and another for a reckless challenge on Marc Pugh.

They were already trailing 2-0 after Joshua King scored from close range just 96 seconds into the match and Benik Afobe converted from Charlie Daniels' pass.

Marc Pugh's curling effort made it 3-0 and Daniels added the fourth.

Boro, 19th in the Premier League, are nine points from safety with just five games remaining.

Reckless Ramirez costs Boro

Middlesbrough's relegation could be confirmed as early as next weekend.

They entertain Manchester City on 30 April and if they lose that - and results go against Steve Agnew's team between now and then - their return to the Championship after one season will be confirmed.

Boro needed to win at the Vitality Stadium. Instead, they were embarrassed during a self-inflicted defeat and are now 16 league games without a win.

Pugh was afforded too much space to cross for King to score his 11th Premier League goal in 2017 - five more than Middlesbrough have managed.

Then Middlesbrough's defence was caught out by Daniels' clever pass for Afobe to double the lead.

Ramirez's red card was inexcusable. The former Southampton player deservedly got a yellow card for diving inside the Cherries' penalty area before needlessly hacking at Pugh.

Middlesbrough's Gaston Ramirez (left) is shown a red card during his team's 4-0 defeat at Bournemouth
Gaston Ramirez (left) joined Middlesbrough permanently from Southampton last summer after a loan spell

Marten de Roon did force a fine save from Artur Boruc, but Bournemouth cruised to three points after the interval.

Pugh marked his 250th league appearances for the Cherries by making it 3-0 after a wonderful pass from Lewis Cook, before Daniels skipped around a couple of challenges and rifled home from 20 yards.

Cherries set for third Premier League season

Bournemouth came into this on the back of a four-match winless run that had raised fears they could be dragged into the end-of-season battle for survival.

This win catapulted Eddie Howe's men four places up the table to 12th, seven points above the relegation zone with four games to play.

Only a disastrous finish will prevent the Cherries from playing in the top flight for a third successive season.

Players from Bournemouth and Middlesbrough took part in a minute's applause before kick-off in memory of former Boro defender Ugo Ehiogu, who has died at the age of 44
Players from Bournemouth and Middlesbrough took part in a minute's applause before kick-off in memory of former Boro defender Ugo Ehiogu, who has died at the age of 44

They have 38 points and need another five from four games to surpass last season's tally of 42, which earned them 16th spot.

Although Middlesbrough were poor, Bournemouth turned on the style as they overcame the loss of on-loan midfielder Jack Wilshere for the rest of the campaign to ease to victory.

Man of the Match - Marc Pugh (Bournemouth)

Bournemouth's Marc Pugh celebrates scoring against Middlesbrough
Marc Pugh will not forget his 250th league appearance for Bournemouth in a hurry. The 30-year-old set up the first and scored the third. A day to remember.

'Angry and disappointing'

Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe: "We started very well, in a game of this importance when you score as early as we did it gives you a massive lift.

"Our aim was to come out fast and create a high tempo, and it was difficult for Middlesbrough to handle it after the sending-off. We were disciplined and saw the game out well.

Bournemouth 4-0 Middlesbrough: Eddie Howe says Cherries were worthy winners

"It was great to see our fluency with the ball which we didn't have for the last couple of games. It's important you have a philosophy the players believe in."

Middlesbrough head coach Steve Agnew: "In a way, we lost the game in the first 10 minutes. That's not like us, it was really poor defending. Playing short passes on the edge of the area is why we've been conceding.

"We gave ourselves a very difficult afternoon after conceding those two early goals and going down to 10 men against a very good team who score a lot of goals at home.

Bournemouth 4-0 Middlesbrough: We have to regroup - Steve Agnew

"It was naive defending. There's angry and disappointed players in there but we'll all be in tomorrow morning to address the situation."

'Fastest red card for three years' - the stats

  • Gaston Ramirez was sent off for two bookable offences after just 20 minutes - the fastest in a Premier League game since Chico Flores for Swansea against Chelsea in April 2014 (16 minutes).
  • No ground has seen more Premier League goals this season than the Vitality Stadium (57, level with Anfield and the Liberty Stadium).
  • Bournemouth have scored 31 home Premier League goals this season, a number only four sides can better (Tottenham 43, Everton and Liverpool 41, and Chelsea 39).
  • Middlesbrough have failed to score in 10 Premier League away games this season, more than any other side.
  • Only Romelu Lukaku (14) and Harry Kane (12) have scored more Premier League goals in 2017 than Joshua King (11).

What's next?

Sunderland are up next - for both Bournemouth and Middlesbrough. The Cherries visit the Stadium of Light next Saturday (15:00 BST) three days after the Black Cats have visited the Riverside (19:45 BST) for a game between the bottom two.



Formation 4-4-1-1

  • 1Boruc
  • 15A Smith
  • 2Francis
  • 3S Cook
  • 11Daniels
  • 24FraserSubstituted forStanislasat 72'minutes
  • 8Arter
  • 4GoslingSubstituted forL Cookat 44'minutes
  • 7Pugh
  • 17KingSubstituted forMoussetat 84'minutes
  • 9Afobe


  • 10Gradel
  • 18L Cook
  • 19Stanislas
  • 21Allsop
  • 26Mings
  • 31Mousset
  • 38Cargill


Formation 5-4-1

  • 12Guzan
  • 17BarragánSubstituted forForshawat 23'minutes
  • 25Chambers
  • 4AyalaBooked at 67mins
  • 6Gibson
  • 3FriendBooked at 58mins
  • 21RamírezBooked at 20mins
  • 14de RoonSubstituted forda Silvaat 38'minutes
  • 8Clayton
  • 19Downing
  • 10NegredoSubstituted forGestedeat 80'minutes


  • 1Konstantopoulos
  • 2da Silva
  • 5Bernardo
  • 18Stuani
  • 29Gestede
  • 34Forshaw
  • 37Traoré
Graham Scott

Match Stats

Home TeamBournemouthAway TeamMiddlesbrough
Shots on Target

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Bournemouth 4, Middlesbrough 0.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Bournemouth 4, Middlesbrough 0.

  3. Post update

    Attempt saved. Harry Arter (Bournemouth) right footed shot from more than 40 yards on the left wing is saved in the top centre of the goal.

  4. Post update

    Attempt missed. Harry Arter (Bournemouth) left footed shot from outside the box is too high. Assisted by Lewis Cook.

  5. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Lys Mousset (Bournemouth) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Benik Afobe.

  6. Post update

    Attempt missed. Lys Mousset (Bournemouth) left footed shot from the centre of the box is too high.

  7. Post update

    Lys Mousset (Bournemouth) wins a free kick on the left wing.

  8. Post update

    Foul by Daniel Ayala (Middlesbrough).

  9. Post update

    Offside, Bournemouth. Simon Francis tries a through ball, but Marc Pugh is caught offside.

  10. Post update

    Offside, Bournemouth. Simon Francis tries a through ball, but Adam Smith is caught offside.

  11. Post update

    Charlie Daniels (Bournemouth) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  12. Post update

    Foul by Stewart Downing (Middlesbrough).

  13. Post update

    Foul by Harry Arter (Bournemouth).

  14. Post update

    Adam Forshaw (Middlesbrough) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  15. Substitution

    Substitution, Bournemouth. Lys Mousset replaces Joshua King.

  16. Post update

    Foul by Adam Smith (Bournemouth).

  17. Post update

    Adam Forshaw (Middlesbrough) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  18. Post update

    Harry Arter (Bournemouth) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  19. Post update

    Foul by Fabio (Middlesbrough).

  20. Substitution

    Substitution, Middlesbrough. Rudy Gestede replaces Álvaro Negredo.


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