Meet the opposition | Bournemouth

5th November
First team
Gary Cahill

As Swansea City get set to take on Bournemouth this weekend, we take a closer look at the Cherries.

What’s their story?

The Cherries are in their second season in the Championship, after a five-year stint in the Premier League came to an end in 2020.

Enjoying their greatest period of success under Eddie Howe, the club rose from the bottom tier to the top-flight and  finished 16th in their first season in the Premier League and went on to enjoy a best-ever league finish of ninth in the 2016-17 season.

Despite relegation, they retained a strong squad but missed out in the play-offs last term as Brentford beat them over two legs in the semi-finals.

How's their form?

Excellent. They may have suffered a first defeat of the season against Preston in midweek, but there is no denying the Cherries have been the division’s outstanding side over the opening months of the campaign.

They have dropped just 11 points over their first 16 games, and are two points clear of Fulham at the summit of the table.

Who’s the boss?

Scott Parker

Scott Parker. The former England international took over as Bournemouth boss during the off-season, after just over two years in charge of Fulham.

Ex-midfielder Parker is the only player to have played for five London clubs in the Premier League. He started his career in south London with Charlton Athletic, and finished his playing career in west London with Fulham. He also played for the likes of Chelsea, Newcastle United, West Ham United and Tottenham Hotspur.

After his retirement, he started his coaching career with Tottenham’s under-18s before joining Fulham in the summer of 2018 as first-team coach under Slavisa Jokanovic.

Parker became caretaker boss following the dismissal of Claudio Ranieri in February 2019 and went on to be named permanent boss later that season.

He led the Cottagers to promotion, but their stay in the Premier League lasted just the one campaign.

Who’s the captain?

Steve Cook

Steve Cook. The defender was given the captaincy duties at the beginning of last season, taking over the reins from Simon Francis.

He has made over 350 appearances for the Cherries since initially signing on loan in October 2011, missing just 21 games out of 190 in the club’s five seasons in the top-flight.

The 30-year-old has also played for Brighton, with loan spells at Havant and Waterlooville, Eastleigh, Eastbourne Borough and Mansfield Town.

Who are the key men?

Dominic Solanke

Former Liverpool striker Dominic Solanke has enjoyed an excellent start to the campaign, an already has 12 goals to his name in all competitions, while midfielder Phil Billing is also among the goals, with seven under his belt.

At the back the Cherries can call on the considerable experience of ex-Bolton and Chelsea defender Gary Cahill, while they also added Celtic winger Ryan Christie to their ranks in the summer.

They also, of course, have former Swan Jamal Lowe among their forward option.