A.F.C. Bournemouth

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A.F.C. Bournemouth
AFC Bournemouth (2013).svg
Full nameAFC Bournemouth[1]
Nickname(s)The Cherries, Boscombe
Short nameAFCB
Founded1899; 121 years ago (1899) (as Boscombe)
GroundDean Court
OwnerMaxim Demin
ChairmanJeff Mostyn
ManagerJason Tindall
2019–20Premier League, 18th of 20 (relegated)
WebsiteClub website
Current season

A.F.C. Bournemouth (/ˈbɔːrnməθ/ (About this soundlisten)) is a professional association football club based in Kings Park, Boscombe, a suburb of Bournemouth, Dorset. They are currently competing in the Championship, the second tier of English football. Formed in 1899 as Boscombe St. John's Institute, the club adopted their current name in 1971.

Nicknamed "The Cherries", Bournemouth have played their home games at Dean Court since 1910. Their home colours are red and black striped shirts, with black shorts and socks, inspired by that of Italian club A.C. Milan.

AFC Bournemouth's honours include winning the second and third tiers of English football once, the Associate Members' Cup once and the Football League Third Division South Cup.

The club has spent the majority of their history bouncing between the third and fourth tiers of English football. Under manager Eddie Howe, they had risen through the pyramid; the 2015–16 season was their first ever in the top flight, and they remained there for five seasons, until and including the 2019–20 season, when they were relegated following an 18th place-finish.



Although the exact date of the club's foundation is not known, there is proof that it was formed in the autumn of 1899 out of the remains of the older Boscombe St. John's Institute Football Club[3] The club was originally known as Boscombe Football Club. The first president was Mr. J. C. Nutt.[4]

In their first season, 1899–1900, Boscombe competed in the Bournemouth and District Junior League. They also played in the Hants Junior Cup. During the first two seasons, they played on a football pitch in Castlemain Avenue, Pokesdown. From their third season, the team played on a pitch in King's Park. In the 1905–06 season, Boscombe graduated to senior amateur football.[5]

In 1910, the club was granted a long lease over some wasteland next to Kings Park as the club's football ground by local businessman J.E. Cooper-Dean. With their own ground, named Dean Court after the benefactor, the club continued to thrive and dominated the local football scene. The same year the club signed its first professional player Baven Penton.[6]

Around about this time, the club obtained their nickname "The Cherries". There are two leading explanations of how the club gained the nickname: from the cherry-red striped shirts that the team played in, and, perhaps less plausible, because Dean Court was built adjacent to the Cooper-Dean estate, which, it is believed, may have contained many cherry trees.[citation needed]

For the first time, during the 1913–14 season, the club competed in the FA Cup. The club's progress, however, was halted in 1914 with the outbreak of World War I, and Boscombe returned to the Hampshire League.[citation needed]

In 1920, the Third Division of the Football League was formed, and Boscombe were promoted to the Southern League, finding moderate success.[citation needed]

Bournemouth and Boscombe Athletic[edit]

To make the club more representative of the district, the name was changed to Bournemouth and Boscombe Athletic Football Club in 1923. During the same year, the club was elected to the newly expanded Third Division South. The first league match was at Swindon Town on 25 August 1923, which Bournemouth lost 3–1. The first league game at Dean Court was also against Swindon, where Bournemouth gained their first league point after a 0–0 draw.[citation needed]

Initially, Bournemouth struggled in the Football League but eventually established themselves as a Third Division club. Bournemouth remains on the records as the longest continuous members of the Third Division.[citation needed]

As a league club, Bournemouth had to wait until after the Second World War before winning their first trophy. This was accomplished as they beat Walsall in the Third Division (South) Cup in the final at Stamford Bridge.[citation needed]

AFC Bournemouth[edit]

The club adopted the AFC Bournemouth name in 1971,[7] so the club would appear first in alphabetical lists of English clubs.[8] A year later, the club adopted a new badge as a symbol of the club's progress.[9] The stripes in the background were based on the club shirt, while in the foreground is the profile of a player heading the ball, in honour of Dickie Dowsett, a prolific scorer for the club in the 1950s and 1960s.[10]

Their red and black kit, introduced in 1971, was based on the A.C. Milan strip.[11] This was the era of Ted MacDougall, a prolific goalscorer who, in an FA Cup tie in November 1971, scored nine goals in an 11–0 win against Margate.[citation needed]

Late 20th century[edit]

Chart of yearly table positions of Bournemouth in the League.

Bournemouth recorded a famous victory over holders Manchester United in the FA Cup in January 1984, while they were managed by Harry Redknapp.[12][13] The club won its second piece of silverware by winning the Associate Members' Cup in its inaugural season, beating Hull City 2–1 at Boothferry Park on 24 May 1984 in the final.[14]

Redknapp took Bournemouth into the second tier of the English league for the first time in their history as Third Division champions in 1987. After comfortably surviving in their first season in the Second Division, Bournemouth made a serious challenge for promotion to the top flight in the 1988–89 season; they ultimately fell away after a poor run late in the season, but their eventual finish of 12th place remained their highest-ever in the Football League until the 2013–14 season.[citation needed]

On 5 May 1990, the final day of the 1989–90 season, Leeds United had the chance to win the Second Division and gain promotion into the First Division by beating Bournemouth at Dean Court. Some United fans had already caused trouble in the town during the morning and the atmosphere was tense as Leeds won the match by a single goal. Combined with the results of other matches, this meant that Leeds were promoted while Bournemouth were relegated. The violence and destruction by visitors to Bournemouth continued over the holiday weekend, causing more than £1 million worth of damage and injury to opposing fans and police officers.[15] The town's Daily Echo newspaper reported that "spectators, including many young children, had to run to safety as missiles were hurled and riot police waded in to control the crowds."[15] The matter was raised in Parliament by one of the town's MPs. Financially, the Leeds trouble affected the club for more than a decade, as Bournemouth were prevented by local police from staging home games on Bank Holidays (traditionally a popular day for football) until a game against Shrewsbury Town on 21 April 2003.[citation needed]

Redknapp remained at the club for two more seasons, both of which ended with the club falling three points short of the play-offs. However, mounting financial pressures caused him to resign his position at the end of the 1991–92 season, and he subsequently rejoined former club West Ham United as a coach. He was replaced by Tony Pulis, who built a much cheaper squad that could only manage two consecutive 17th-place finishes before Pulis walked out of the club, blaming financial pressures.[citation needed]

Bournemouth went the first few months of the 1994–95 season without a permanent manager in place, and a dreadful start saw them bottom of the table for much of the first half of the season. Despite a minor upturn in form when Mel Machin was appointed as manager, they looked highly unlikely to survive, given that there were five relegation spots in Division Two for that season due to league reconstruction. However, a late run of form combined with collapses by relegation rivals Cambridge United and Plymouth Argyle saw them survive on the last day of the season by two points.[citation needed]

Machin ultimately remained in charge for six years, most of which were marked by unremarkable mid-table finishes. The 1998–99 season proved to be arguably the highlight of his tenure, with the club making a serious playoff challenge for most of the season, but ultimately falling short and finishing seventh. However, a drop to 16th place in the 1999–2000 season followed by a poor start to the following season saw Machin removed from his position and given the role of director of football.[citation needed]

Early 21st century[edit]

Former AFC Bournemouth crest

Sean O'Driscoll was promoted from the coaching staff in place of Mel Machin at the start of the 2000–01 season. In O'Driscoll's first season as manager, Bournemouth narrowly missed out on the Division Two playoffs but were relegated a year later in the new stadium (in the early part of the 2001–02 season, they played their home matches at Dorchester Town's ground while their own stadium was being redeveloped). The board kept faith in O'Driscoll and they were rewarded with promotion via the Division Three playoffs in 2002–03. The club became the first to score five goals at the Millennium Stadium when they beat Lincoln City 5–2 in the 2002–03 Division Three play-off final with goals from Steve Fletcher, Carl Fletcher (2), Stephen Purches and Garreth O'Connor. Under O'Driscoll, Bournemouth narrowly missed out on the play-offs for the 2003–04 and 2004–05 seasons, and just avoided relegation in the 2005–06 season.[citation needed]

Long-serving player James Hayter scored the fastest league hat-trick in English Football League history during the 2003–04 season. The Cherries were leading 3–0 against Wrexham thanks to goals from Stephen Purches, Warren Cummings and Warren Feeney when Hayter was brought onto the field as a substitute. With 86 minutes gone, Hayter managed to net three goals in the space of two minutes and 17 seconds, making the final score 6–0 to Bournemouth.[citation needed]

In September 2006, with the team in eighth in the League, Sean O'Driscoll left to become manager of Doncaster Rovers. He was replaced by Kevin Bond.[citation needed]

Decline and administration (2008–2009)[edit]

In February 2008, Bournemouth were forced into administration, suffering a ten-point deduction which put them in relegation trouble. Bournemouth had debts of around £4 million and almost went out of business completely.[16] The off-field uncertainty continued throughout the season, with only one, ultimately unsuccessful, bid for the club accepted,[17] and the club ended the season being relegated to League Two.[citation needed]

Ahead of the 2008–09 season, the team's future in the Football League was put into doubt when the league threatened to block Bournemouth's participation in League Two, due to problems with the club's continuing administration and change in ownership. The league ordered both Bournemouth and Rotherham United to demonstrate that they could fulfil all of their fixtures and find a way out of administration,[18] eventually allowing the club to compete with a 17-point penalty for failing to follow the Football League insolvency rules. The new company was also ordered to pay unsecured creditors the amount offered at the time of the original CVA (around ten pence in the pound) within two years.[19]

Early into the season, manager Bond was sacked and was replaced by former player Jimmy Quinn, who would himself leave the club only a few months later.[20] Former player Eddie Howe took over as manager with the club still ten points adrift at the bottom of the league and initially on a caretaker basis, becoming the youngest manager in the Football League at the age of 31.[21]

At the end of 2008, it was announced that local businessman Adam Murry had completed the purchase of 50% of the club's shares from previous chairman, Paul Baker. However, in January 2009, Murry missed the deadline to buy Baker's shares.[22]

In the final home game of the 2008–09 season, the Cherries guaranteed their Football League status by beating Grimsby Town 2–1 with a winning goal ten minutes from time by Bournemouth's Steve Fletcher, sparking wild celebrations after a fairytale ending to "The Great Escape." They finished their troubled season with their best away win in 30 years with a 4–0 victory at Morecambe.[citation needed]

In June 2009, a consortium including Adam Murry finally took over Bournemouth. The consortium included Jeff Mostyn, former vice-chairman Steve Sly, Neill Blake and former Dorchester Town chairman Eddie Mitchell.[citation needed]

Rise to the Premier League (2009–2015)[edit]

Howe's first full season in charge brought success as Bournemouth finished second in League Two to earn promotion with two games to spare. Howe subsequently left the club for Burnley during the following season; his successor, another former Bournemouth player, Lee Bradbury, led Bournemouth to the League One play-offs. The two-legged semi-final against Huddersfield Town finished 3–3 after extra time, and Huddersfield went through the final by winning the penalty shoot-out 4–2. Bradbury was unable to lead Bournemouth to another promotion challenge in the 2011–12 Football League One, placing 11th after a season of indifferent results, and was replaced by youth team coach Paul Groves for the final games of the season.[citation needed]

Groves remained in charge at the start of the 2012–13 season, only to be sacked in October 2012 following a start which left the club near the bottom of the table. Eddie Howe returned as manager, and not only did he pull the club away from their early-season relegation battle, they achieved promotion to the Championship, returning to the second-tier of English football for the first time since 1990. The club also revealed a new club crest.[23] After a promising start to life in the Championship, the club was handed a fourth Round FA Cup tie with Premier League club Liverpool which ended in a 2–0 loss. Bournemouth finished their first season back in the Championship in tenth place, their highest ever position in the Football League.[citation needed]

On 25 October 2014, Bournemouth won 8–0 away at St. Andrew's against Birmingham City. It was the first time that the Cherries had ever scored eight goals in a league game and their largest winning margin in the league (not counting a 10–0 win over Northampton Town in September 1939, which was discounted after the league was abandoned due to the Second World War).[24] The club followed up this success with a 2–1 victory over Premier League side West Bromwich Albion in the League Cup, reaching the quarter-finals of the competition for the first time. Bournemouth were again drawn against Liverpool but lost 3–1. The club spent most of the 2014–15 season near the top of the table, and a 3–0 win away at Charlton Athletic on the final day of the season was enough to clinch the Championship title and a first-ever promotion to the top flight of English football.[25]

Premier League era (2015–2020)[edit]

Bournemouth's first ever game in the top flight of English football was a 1–0 defeat home to Aston Villa played on 8 August 2015. Early on in the 2015–16 season the team was beset by a number of crippling injuries, including to their captain, Tommy Elphick, and their star striker from the previous season, Callum Wilson, who was injured for the majority of the season. The team struggled for most of the first half of the season until a turning point was reached during a game at Dean Court against Everton in which Junior Stanislas scored a goal in the seventh minute of stoppage time to tie the game. From there, Bournemouth defeated Chelsea and Manchester United in back-to-back wins. The team eventually finished 16th in the league, securing their Premier League status for another year.[citation needed]

Their second season, despite being largely tipped to suffer second season syndrome, they defied all odds to finish in 9th place. Their squad was largely defined by the highly publicised loans of Jack Wilshere from Arsenal and Nathan Aké from Chelsea, but also by the strong form of Josh King, who scored 16 goals in 36 appearances, and the £15 million pound move of Jordon Ibe from Liverpool. A weak start to the season saw them in the relegation zone for the first three weeks, but after a 1–0 victory against West Bromwich Albion, they never again dropped below 16th place in the table.[26] Key points of the season occurred when they soundly defeated Hull City 6–1 and defeated Liverpool 4–3, both of which helped their survival push at the end of the season, when they went unbeaten in the last five matches and earned 11 points from 15.[citation needed]

In preparation for the following season, Howe signed Aké permanently for a club-record fee,[27] while Asmir Begović[28] and Jermain Defoe[29] joined the club as well. The season began poorly, with the team losing their first 4 matches.[30] However, a run of good form through late December and January saw them steer clear of the relegation zone, and saw Howe earn his second Premier League Manager of the Month award.[31] They won 2–1 at home against Arsenal,[32] had a 3–0 victory at Stamford Bridge against Chelsea[33] and gained 19 points from losing positions in the second half of the season; a Premier League Record.[34] The team battled inconsistent form the rest of the season, but still managed a 12th-place finish.[35]

The 2018–19 season saw Howe sign David Brooks, Diego Rico, and Jefferson Lerma during the summer, the last joining for a club-record fee.[36][37] Contrasting with the previous season, the club had a strong start, sitting in 6th place after the first 12 rounds. However, their form regressed for the remainder of the season and the club battles injury problems, with Lewis Cook, Simon Francis shelved amongst others. Dominic Solanke, Chris Mepham and Nathaniel Clyne all joined the club during the winter, Solanke and Mepham permanently and Clyne on loan. In the end, Bournemouth finished in 14th place, securing a 5th season in the Premier League.[citation needed]

The 2019–20 season like the previous season also started brightly with the team sitting in 7th place at the beginning of November.[38] However once again the club battled injury problems and the club dropped into the relegation zone in January, leading to the club's first relegation battle in the Premier League era. Poor performances continued after the coronavirus pandemic had interrupted the season which also saw Ryan Fraser reject a short term contract until the end of the season, but a draw against Tottenham Hotspur and a 4–1 win over Leicester City gave them hope.[39][40] However back to back losses to Manchester City[41] and Southampton[42] put them on the brink, and despite a 3–1 victory over Everton on the final match day of the season, the club’s relegation was confirmed following Aston Villa’s draw with West Ham.[43] On 1 August 2020, Howe left the club by mutual consent, saying how he believes that it is "the right time for the club to have a change".[44]

Return to the Championship (2020-)[edit]

On 8 August, Jason Tindall, a former Bournemouth player and Howe's longtime assistant, was appointed as manager.[45] Nathan Aké also left the club, signing for Manchester City for a reported, club-record, £41 million fee.[46]

Financial Fair Play violation and punishment=[edit]

In 2016, Bournemouth were found guilty of violating the Football League's Financial Fair Play regulations during 2014–15, the season it secured promotion to the Premier League. The club's over-spend broke the 'maximum deviation', with a £38.3 million financial loss in 2014–15. This followed a loss of £10.3 million in 2013–2014. The club was originally fined £7.6 million by the Football League, but subsequently negotiated a settlement with a fine of £4.75 million for breaching Financial Fair Play rules. The decision followed months of speculation and investigation about the club breaking Football League regulations.[47][48][49]


Current squad[edit]

As of 30 July 2020[50][51]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
2 England DF Simon Francis (captain)[52]
3 England DF Steve Cook (3rd captain)
4 England MF Dan Gosling (4th captain)
6 England MF Andrew Surman (vice-captain)[52]
7 Norway FW Joshua King
8 Colombia MF Jefferson Lerma
9 England FW Dominic Solanke
11 England DF Charlie Daniels
12 England GK Aaron Ramsdale
13 England FW Callum Wilson
14 Netherlands MF Arnaut Danjuma
15 England DF Adam Smith
16 England MF Lewis Cook
17 England DF Jack Stacey
19 England MF Junior Stanislas
No. Position Player
20 Wales MF David Brooks
21 Spain DF Diego Rico
25 England DF Jack Simpson
26 England DF Lloyd Kelly
27 Bosnia and Herzegovina GK Asmir Begović
28 England MF Kyle Taylor
29 Denmark MF Philip Billing
33 Wales DF Chris Mepham
36 England MF Matt Butcher
38 Nigeria MF Nnamdi Ofoborh
42 Republic of Ireland GK Mark Travers
44 England FW Sam Surridge
48 Republic of Ireland MF Harry Arter
53 Republic of Ireland MF Gavin Kilkenny
54 Romania MF Alex Dobre

Out on loan[edit]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
No. Position Player

Under-21s and Academy[edit]

Club officials[edit]

Position Name
Chairman England Jeff Mostyn
Owner Russia Maxim Demin
Chief Executive England Neill Blake
Director Russia Oleg Tikhturov
Director England Nick Rothwell
Director Russia Igor Tikhturov
Director Russia Alexey Panferov
Manager England Jason Tindall
Assistant Manager Vacant
First Team Coach England Stephen Purches
Assistant First Team Coach England Steve Fletcher
Assistant First Team Coach England Simon Weatherstone
Assistant First Team Coach Portugal Hugo Faria
First Team Goalkeeper Coach England Neil Moss
First Team Goalkeeper Coach England Anthony White
U21 Manager England Shaun Cooper
U21 Coach Wales Carl Fletcher
U21 Goalkeeper Coach England Gareth Stewart
U18 Manager England Alan Connell
U18 Coach England James Hayter

Past managers[edit]

Source:[citation needed]


The team's colours have varied slightly throughout the club's history. Starting off playing in red and white stripes, Bournemouth have also played in all-red shirts, red with white sleeves, and mostly, since 1990, in red and black stripes, similar to that of A.C. Milan.[54] A predominantly red shirt was chosen for the 2004–05 and 2005–06 seasons before a return to the stripes for the 2006–07 season due to fan demand.[55]

Since 2017 Bournemouth's kit has been manufactured by Umbro. Previously it has been made by Umbro (1974–78, 1983–86), Adidas (1978–81), Osca (1982–83), Henson (1986–87), Scoreline (1987–90), Ellgren (1990–92), Matchwinner (1993–95), Le Coq Sportif (1995–96), Patrick (1996–2000), Super League (200-01), TFG Sportswear (2001–03), Bourne Red (2003–08), Carbrini Sportswear (2008–11, 2014–15), Fila (2011–14) and JD Sports (2015–17).[citation needed]

Their shirts are currently sponsored by Mansion.com. On 2017–2018 season, the Mansion.com logo will appear on the left shirt sleeve of Bournemouth's home and third shirts. In addition, Casino.com, which is a subsidiary of Mansion, will feature on the sleeve of the club's away shirt.[56] Before this, sponsors have been Reg Heynes Toyota (1980–82, 1983–85), Coopers Beers (1985–87), Canberra Homes (1987–88), Nolan (1988–89), A1 Windscreens (1990–92), Exchange & Mart (1992–93), Frizzell (1993–97), Seward (1997–2006), Focal Point (2006–08, 2011–12), Carbrini Sportswear (2008–11), and Energy Consulting (2012–15).[57]


According to a recent poll named 'The League of Love and Hate' in August 2019, Bournemouth supporters named near neighbours Southampton to be their biggest rivals, with Portsmouth and Brighton & Hove Albion following.[58]

Statistics and records[edit]

Steve Fletcher holds the record for Bournemouth appearances, having played 726 first-team matches between 1992 and 2013. He also holds the record for most League appearances, making 628. Ron Eyre holds the record for the most goals 229 in a Bournemouth shirt having played 337 first-team matches between 1924 and 1933.Ted MacDougall holds the record for the most goals scored in a single season, 42 in the 1970–71 season in the Fourth Division.[citation needed]

The highest transfer fee received for a Bournemouth player is £20 million, from Aston Villa for Tyrone Mings in June 2019, while the highest transfer fee paid by the club to date was for Nathan Aké from Chelsea in August 2017, also for £20 million.[citation needed]

The club's highest ever league finish so far is ninth place in the Premier League, achieved in the 2016–17 season.[citation needed]

Competitive, professional matches only, as of March 2020[citation needed]

Most appearances[edit]

No. Country Name Played Apps Position
1 England Steve Fletcher 1992–2009 & 2010–2013 726 FW
2 England Neil Young 1994–2008 483 DF
3 England Ray Bumstead 1958–1969 436 MF
4 Republic of Ireland Sean O'Driscoll 1984–1995 423 MF
5 England James Hayter 1997–2007 407 FW
6 Republic of Ireland Tommy Godwin 1952–1962 388 GK
7 England Ron Eyre 1924–1933 337 FW
8 England Steve Cook 2011– 327 DF
9 England Simon Francis 2011– 324 DF
10 England Marc Pugh 2010–2019 312 MF
11 England John Impey 1975–1983 303 DF
12 Jersey Brett Pitman 2005–2011 & 2012–2015 301 FW
13 England Eddie Howe 1995–2002 & 2004–2007 300 DF
14 England Stephen Purches 2000–2007 & 2010–2014 290 DF
15 England Charlie Daniels 2011– 265 DF

Top goal scorers[edit]

# Country Name Played Goals Apps Position Goals per game
1 England Ron Eyre 1924–1933 229 337 FW 0.68
2 Scotland Ted MacDougall 1969–1972 & 1978–1980 142 212 FW 0.67
3 England Steve Fletcher 1992–2009 & 2010–2013 122 726 FW 0.17
4 England James Hayter 1997–2007 108 407 FW 0.27
5 Jersey Brett Pitman 2005–2011 & 2012–2015 102 301 FW 0.34
6 England Dickie Dowsett 1957–1962 85 179 FW 0.47
7 England Stan Newsham 1952–1957 78 152 FW 0.51
8 England Doug McGibbon 1948–1951 68 111 FW 0.61
9 England Jack Cross 1947–1953 67 173 FW 0.39
10 England Callum Wilson 2014– 67 180 FW 0.38


Record transfer fees paid[edit]

# Pos: Player Transferred from Fee Date
1 CB Netherlands Nathan Aké England Chelsea £20,000,000 June 2017
2 ST England Dominic Solanke England Liverpool £19,000,000 January 2019
3 LW England Jordan Ibe England Liverpool £15,000,000 July 2016
4 LW Netherlands Arnaut Danjuma Belgium Club Brugge £13,700,000 August 2019
5 LB England Lloyd Kelly England Bristol City £13,000,000 May 2019
6 CB Wales Chris Mepham England Brentford £12,000,000 January 2019
7 CAM Wales David Brooks England Sheffield United £11,500,000 July 2018

Record transfer fees received[edit]

# Pos: Player Transferred to Fee Date
1 CB Netherlands Nathan Aké England Man City £41,000,000 August 2020
2 CB England Tyrone Mings England Aston Villa £20,000,000 July 2019
3 RM Scotland Matt Ritchie England Newcastle United £12,000,000 July 2016
4 ST France Lys Mousset England Sheffield Utd £10,000,000 July 2019
5 ST Democratic Republic of the Congo Benik Afobe England Wolverhampton Wanderers £10,000,000 June 2018
6 CB England Tommy Elphick England Aston Villa £3,000,000 June 2016
7 CF England Lee Tomlin England Bristol City £3,000,000 July 2016


League history[edit]


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  29. ^ "Jermaine Defoe agrees to join Bournemouth from Sunderland". Sky Sports. 23 June 2017.
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