The championship leaders took maximum points again with another impressive away performance against a hapless Wigan side who are now without a home win in 12 attempts.
The hosts started the game on the front foot, with McClean flashing a cross across the face of goal and also hitting the bar with a dangerous free kick within the opening 10 minutes. However, having failed to capitalise on their strong start, the Cherries then grew into the game and began playing the style of football that has gained them so many admirers this season, on what was a noticeably tough playing surface. They created a couple of chances through Ritchie and Kermorgant, who forced Al-Habsi into his first real save of the game.
Bournemouth then controversially took the lead in the 37th minute when Kermorgant flicked the ball on to the cherries top goal scorer, Callum Wilson, who appeared to be in an offside position, before slotting the ball calmly past the Wigan keeper. It then only took a further four minutes for the visitors to double the lead, McCann being caught in possession on the edge of the box by Kermorgant, who fired his shot into the bottom corner – making something out of nothing.
The second half started as the first ended, with Howe’s men on the attack; they were soon appealing for a penalty following Barnett’s challenge on Wilson, however, the referee waved these appeals away. It wasn’t too long before they had the ball in the net again though, Wilson with his 2nd of the game and 17th of the season in the 57th minute, showing good skill and composure, something he lacked just seconds before having fired over from a similar position, rounding Al-Habsi to seemingly put the game out of reach for the Latics.
The hosts did get a goal back through debutant Leon Clarke on the hour mark, heading home following good work out wide from James McClean. However, despite piling the pressure on soon after that goal, the league leaders professionally saw out the remainder of the game and ensured their 8th league win out of the last 10 to remain ahead of the chasing pack at the top of the Championship table. For Wigan on the other hand, they find themselves 7 points adrift of safety with the games beginning to run out.
Formation provided by Sky Sports.
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|Ali Al-Habsi: The Latics keeper made a fine save a 0-0, and there was very little he could do about the three Bournemouth goals.||6.0|
|Chris Herd: The Aston Villa loanee had a tough day being run ragged by the partnership of Pugh and Daniels, finding them often too hard to deal with.||5.0|
|Liam Ridgewell: Playing his last home game for Wigan, Ridgewell found it tough to keep up with the pace and strength of Bournemouth’s front two.||5.5|
|Leon Barnett: Barnett appeared to be gifted the task of trying to keep Wilson quiet, but he struggled throughout the game and was beaten fairly easily for Bournemouth’s third goal.||5.0|
|Andrew Taylor: Taylor failed to have much of an impact on the game, however, Bournemouth are normally incredibly strong on the right side and Taylor managed to prevent many chances coming down that side.||6.0|
|Don Cowie: Another player who failed to have much of an impact on the game. He was unable to get on the ball as much as he would have liked and didn’t offer much protection for Herd at full back.||5.5|
|William Kvist: Kvist found it difficult up against Arter and Surman in the middle. His work rate throughout the game was good but failed to put his stamp on the game.||5.0|
|Chris McCann: McCann, one of the more experienced Wigan players, was at fault for the second goal as he dallied on the ball for too long and Kermorgant punished him.||4.5|
|Kim Bo-Kyung: For the first half an hour of the game, Kim was one of the stand out players demonstrating good pace and vision. Unfortunately for Wigan, he had to be replaced at half time due to lack of match fitness.||7.0|
|James McClean: The Irishman was Wigan’s best player on the day, running tirelessly around the pitch, even at 3-0 down, and provided the assist for Clarke’s goal.||7.5|
|Leon Clarke: As debut’s go, the Wolves loanee had a good one. He bagged himself a goal and battled well with Bournemouth’s centre backs. Unfortunately for him, there wasn’t quite enough service throughout the game.||7.0|
|Billy McKay: Once he was brought on, he got in some good positions but was unable to have a real impact on the game.||6.0|
|Sheyi Ojo: The youngster only got on for half an hour but he added pace and skill, exciting the crowd with a couple of cameo runs, a very promising performance.||7.0|
|Artur Boruc: Boruc made a couple of important saves during the game, and although he was unable to keep a clean sheet, there was little he could do to prevent Clarke’s header.||6.5|
|Charlie Daniels: The full-back worked well with Pugh down the left hand side, especially in the first half, getting into some really dangerous positions and causing problems for the Wigan defence.||7.0|
|Tommy Elphick: Bournemouth’s captain was solid at the back on a tricky pitch, looking extremely comfortable on the ball.||6.5|
|Steve Cook: Cook looked equally calm and composed on the ball, and made some important challenges and interceptions throughout the game.||7.0|
|Simon Francis: Arguably one of Bournemouth’s most impressive and consistent performers throughout the season, Francis had relatively quiet but solid game at right back.||6.0|
|Marc Pugh: Pugh was a constant threat to the Wigan full-back and his work rate for the duration of the game was excellent as always.||7.0|
|Harry Arter: The Irishman’s willingness to run and his commitment is always evident and he put in another solid performance for Bournemouth.||6.5|
|Andrew Surman: Alongside Arter, Surman also put in a good performance, preventing Wigan from having much of the ball in the centre of the park.||6.0|
|Matt Ritchie: Ritchie always provides a goal threat coming from midfield, and despite missing a couple of chances, he was a handful for the Wigan defenders.||6.5|
|Yann Kermorgant: The Frenchman managed one goal and one assist, working tirelessly alongside Wilson to always provide an option for his teammates.||7.5|
|Callum Wilson: The strength, skill and composure shown by the 22-year-old earned him a brace and a man of the match performance, his goals being the difference between the teams.||8.5|
|Shaun MacDonald: Only on the field for 15 minutes, MacDonald managed to help Bournemouth successfully see out the remainder of the game.||6.0|
|Adam Smith: Smith was also only on for a short period of time so had very little time to influence proceedings.||6.0|
|Brett Pitman: Pitman was only brought on by Howe to waste some time in injury time at the end of the second half.||6.0|
Man of the Match
|Callum Wilson: The ex-Coventry man showed why Bournemouth paid £3 million for him, putting in a match-winning performance.||8.5|