Bournemouth edge past Crystal Palace as Kluivert claims all three points for Cherries

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Bournemouth edge past Crystal Palace as Kluivert claims all three points for Cherries
Justin Kluivert celebrates with his teammates after netting what would be the winning goal
Justin Kluivert celebrates with his teammates after netting what would be the winning goal
AFP
Andoni Iraola’s Bournemouth side put in another impressive performance to overcome Crystal Palace 1-0 and mark a third successive Premier League victory.

An improvement in performances on the road might be important if Palace are to be successful in their quest to avoid relegation.

But at a blustery Vitality Stadium, the Londoners struggled to impose themselves in the opening stages of the game with a Bournemouth side who have picked up 10 points from their last four league matches showing heaps of attacking intent despite their own league status being all but secure.

After soaking up early pressure, the Eagles had the first real opportunity when French forward Jean-Philippe Mateta swivelled in the area before striking straight at Neto. Minutes later, another chance went begging when Eberechi Eze’s delay in shooting allowed Ilya Zabarnyi to nudge him away from danger.

Bournemouth had moments too, most notably when Dean Henderson was forced into a wonderful save to deny Philip Billing’s bullet header.

But as the interval loomed, it was Palace who came so close to taking the lead when Eze’s close-range finish was ruled out for a marginal offside in the buildup.

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Considering Bournemouth’s 2-0 win in the reverse fixture, the visitors’ first-half display was more evidence of their progress under Glasner. Still, they were forced to battle hard by a Bournemouth side which came into the second period with intent, fizzing several crosses into the Palace area.

There was little further goalmouth action to speak of as the hour mark came and went, although the hosts were the livelier side through the menacing Dominic Solanke.

There was little doubt the visitors were comfortable with the draw on a tough assignment in Dorset. But they were made to pay for a slow half when substitute Kluivert smashed into the net from 12 yards after some fine work from Antoine Semenyo.

From there on, the hosts never looked likely to give up their lead, and it was Henderson who was the busier keeper in the closing stages as he denied Semenyo and Kluivert for a Bournemouth side who were hungrier on the night.

Another fine evening for Iraola’s men, who will be targeting a top-half finish. In contrast, the result leaves Palace with work to do, and, with Manchester City and Liverpool on the horizon, there will need to be improvements if they are to ease relegation fears in the coming weeks.

Flashscore Man of the Match: Justin Kluivert (Bournemouth)

Bournemouth - Crystal Palace player ratings
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