West Ham face Bournemouth on Boxing Day. Here are 10 facts about our opponents:
1. AFC Bournemouth was first formed as Boscombe St John’s Institute FC, the club was reformed as Boscombe FC in 1899, then again as Bournemouth and Boscombe Athletic in 1923, they settled on their current name in 1972.
2. The club was elected to the Third Division in 1923 and hold the record for the longest continuous run in England’s third tier.
3. The club’s red and black kit is based on AC Milan’s, while the club badge features former striker and club legend Dickie Dowsett, who played for the club in the later fifties and early sixties.
4. Eddie Howe took over the club in January 2009 with the club struggling to avoid relegation to the 5th tier of English football. Howe helped keep them up and secured promotions to the third tier the next season. A brief sojourn to Burnley followed but Howe returned and secured two further promotions earning the club its first appearance in the top flight of English football in their history.
5. Eddie Howe was voted Football League Manager of the Decade in 2015,
6. Eddie Howe was Harry Redknapp’s first signing as Portsmouth Manager in 2002, Howe spent two injury-ravaged years with Portsmouth before a fan’s initiative “Eddieshare” helped raise the funds to allow Howe to return to Bournemouth, for whom Howe has played over 250 league games in his two spells with the club.
7. West Ham have always had quite a close affiliation with the south coast club, former players Jimmy Quin and John Bond have managed Bournemouth. Harry Redknapp has managed both clubs, and players who played for both teams include Matty Holmes, Ian Bishop and current Cherries striker Jermain Defoe and Cherries left winger Junior Stanislas amongst others.
8. Former West Ham striker Ted MacDougall once scored 9 goals in an 11-0 win for the Cherries over Margate in an FA Cup match in 1971.
9. Bournemouth’s highest ever league position prior to 2014-15 was 12th in the Second Tier under Harry Redknapp in the 1988-89 season.
10. The two sides have played each other 9 times, West Ham winning 5, drawing 2 and losing 2. The club featured in the first ever league game played at the London Stadium in August last year. Two of the four games played between the clubs have featured a hat-trick for Bournemouth player Callum Wilson in the 4-3 win in 2016 and Joshua King in the last meeting between the sides, a 3-2 win in March 2017.