With the new Premier League season just around the corner, Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe has spent the summer busying himself trying to reinforce his Cherries squad. They will be hoping to improve further on last season’s ninth placed finish, which was the highest in the club’s history.
The south coast club have indeed been busy in the transfer market this summer as well. They have broken their transfer record to bring Nathan Ake back to the club on a permanent basis. He featured for Bournemouth for a fair bit of last season before being unexpectedly recalled to parent club Chelsea, but sealed a permanent return to Dean Court in the summer. He is a player that could be worth our fantasy managers keeping an eye on, as he will surely get plenty of first team action and he has more than shown his ability when featured this season.
He earned 21 points last season. While that total may not have been an outstanding one, he did it in relatively few games – nine starts and three sub appearances. He did have one game with five points for Chelsea, but finished another for the Londoners on -1, so all but four of those 21 were earned in a Bournemouth shirt.
They have added more strength at the back though. They have secured the services of former Chelsea and Stoke keeper Asmir Begovic, but his fantasy stats last season don’t make for pretty reading. He finished up on -6 points, having only featured in two games – not great for a player with a valuation of 7.00m. His Price / Performance ratio was -1.1, but while there is competition for the starting jersey at Bournemouth he could well feature more. Depending on his valuation this season, he may be worth a look from our fantasy managers.
Arguably their finest signing of the summer, however, comes in the form of England international Jermain Defoe. He was a rare bright spark last season for Sunderland, but with the Black Cats relegated and a World Cup on the horizon Defoe sought to remain in the top flight. He chose to return to the club he featured for as a youngster 17 years ago, and his signing has been warmly welcomed by the Cherries’ faithful. He earned 63 points last term, with 15 goals from 37 starts. That many starts for a player nearing the end of his career is massively impressive, and he will certainly be worth considering next season.
That has just been Bournemouth’s signings though! Forward turned winger Lewis Grabban departed in the opposite direction to Defoe, joining Sunderland, so he remains out of the EFL game this season after spending the previous campaign on loan at Reading in the Championship. With the likes of Joshua King, Benik Afobe and Harry Arter remaining in the ranks, Eddie Howe’s men will have a front line to pose a threat, and a back line to nullify opportunities. They may struggle to improve on last season’s finish, but they shouldn’t really be in any trouble.
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