Early goals lift Bournemouth past 10-man Sunderland
Bournemouth needed just 10 minutes to wrap up their first ever Barclays Premier League home win, claiming a 2-0 result at the expense of 10-man Sunderland.
Cherries boss Eddie Howe uncharacteristically made five changes to the side which lost at Norwich last weekend but he was rewarded as his team were straight out of the traps.
Sunderland had hardly touched the ball before Callum Wilson scored his fifth Premier League goal of the campaign before a stunner from Matt Ritchie put them out of sight of Sunderland, who had defender Younes Kaboul sent off in the second half after the France international had been given the run-around by Wilson.
The last time the Black Cats were on the south coast they capitulated in an 8-0 defeat at Southampton, but although they looked in danger of a repeat, Dick Advocaat's side rallied and former Bournemouth loanee Jermain Defoe missed a golden chance before Jeremain Lens saw an effort wrongly disallowed for offside.
Howe, who played alongside Defoe during his stint with the Cherries, may have labelled the striker the best finisher he has ever seen but Wilson may soon give him a run for his money as the man whose goals saw Bournemouth reach the Premier League struck inside the opening four minutes.
Sunderland goalkeeper Costel Pantilimon had blasted a clearance out of the modest Vitality Stadium but the hosts were quick to react and Simon Francis found Dan Gosling with the resulting throw-in, with the former Newcastle man sliding in Wilson, who held off Kaboul to fire home the opener.
If that goal was impressive, the second that followed five minutes later was spectacular.
Sunderland cleared a near-post corner but only as far as Ritchie, who controlled the ball on his chest and flashed a volley past Pantilimon before the former Manchester City man could move.
Howe said ahead of the game that keeping Defoe quiet would make the difference for his side, but when the former Tottenham man was slipped through on goal he could not reduce the arrears as Artur Boruc kept out his low shot.
Advocaat introduced Jack Rodwell at half-time and the midfielder saw an effort deflect behind for a corner from which Lens scored a diving header, only to see the assistant referee wrongly flag for offside.
The visitors had their tails up and Fabio Borini arrowed a long-range strike inches over Boruc's goal as they looked to get a foothold on the game.
Steven Fletcher was the next man to be thrown on by Advocaat, this time with Defoe the man replaced after an unhappy return to his former club, but any hopes of a comeback were ruined with 15 minutes remaining as Kaboul picked up a second booking of the afternoon for a mistimed challenge on Wilson.
Marc Pugh almost added a third for the Cherries but his shot into the turf bounced on to Pantilimon's crossbar and was cleared.
However, the result had long-been decided as Bournemouth won their second game of the season and left Sunderland propping up the table.
TWEET OF THE MATCH
"@DietmarHamann: If Matt Ritchie of Bournemouth doesn't win goal of the season for his strike I'll do a forfeit. Suggestions?" - Didi Hamann takes a leaf out of the eat-my-hat book of bets.
Artur Boruc: 6 (out of 10)
Simon Francis: 7
Steve Cook: 7
Sylvain Distin: 7
Charlie Daniels: 6
Matt Ritchie: 8
Andrew Surman: 6
Dan Gosling: 7
Marc Pugh: 6
Lee Tomlin: 6
Callum Wilson: 7
Eunan O'Kane: 6
Glenn Murray: 6
Adam Smith: 5
Costel Pantilimon: 6
Billy Jones: 6
Sebastian Coates: 6
Younes Kaboul: 4
Patrick van Aanholt: 5
Yann M'Vila: 6
Jordi Gomez: 5
Jeremain Lens: 6
Ola Toivonen: 5
Fabio Borini: 6
Jermain Defoe: 5
Jack Rodwell: 6
Steven Fletcher: 5
Adam Johnson: 5
Callum Wilson: Scored his fifth goal in just four Premier League appearances having held off Kaboul and he continued to torment the France international for the remainder of the game. So much so that Kaboul was dismissed for picking up two yellow cards - both for last-ditch fouls on the Cherries' forward.
MOMENT OF THE MATCH
Matt Ritchie: His goal not only established a two-goal lead for the hosts but is an early contender for goal of the season. The winger chested down a half-cleared corner before hammering an inch-perfect volley past Pantilimon.
VIEW FROM THE BENCH
Howe will be delighted to pick up a first home Premier League win and banish the poor performance at Norwich a week ago. But for Advocaat it was more poor defending and wastefulness in attack, with Newcastle's home defeat to Watford not even offering any comfort as the Dutchman saw his side slip to the bottom of the table.
MOAN OF THE MATCH
Only a few little grumbles. Sunderland's anaemic defending in the opening stages, Kaboul's entire performance, the decision to chalk off Lens' second-half header and the copious amount of roadworks to be overcome en route to the stadium.
WHO'S UP NEXT
Preston North End v Bournemouth (Capital One Cup, September 22)
Sunderland v Manchester City (Capital One Cup, September 22)