Blackburn Rovers 0-3 Bournemouth: Solanke & Billing shine in Cherries win
Dominic Solanke’s 30th goal of a prolific season and a brace from Philip Billing kept Bournemouth on course for promotion to the Premier League and ended Blackburn’s play-off hopes.
The Cherries were equally impressive in their victory and will enter the game with confidence thanks to a clinical attacking display at Ewood Park.
Solanke shone throughout and launched Billing, who sent the ball home from inside the box, and a routine victory was sealed when Billing netted his second from close range with just over 10 minutes to play.
Huddersfield beat Coventry 2-1 and can still mathematically squeeze into the automatic promotion places, but must win their last game, hopefully Forest beat Bournemouth, both teams lose their last game, while the Terriers must also overturn a huge goal difference.
Bournemouth will be sure to earn automatic promotion if they beat Forest in midweek, while two draws in their last two games will also be enough to bring them back to the Premier League.
The Cherries were good value for their half-time lead against a side that failed to make an attempt on target and never looked in serious danger against a Rovers side that realistically needed to win to retain his low chance of a barrage.
Solanke was involved in many of the opposing team’s most dangerous moments, finding Billing having his first shot blocked before the same duo combined perfectly to give the Cherries the lead when Billing passed Solanke and that the former Liverpool striker ended coldly.
The lead should have been doubled shortly after when Jaidon Anthony’s ferocious strike crashed into the bar after another cute pass from Solanke.
Bournemouth continued to stay ahead after the break, although Ben Brereton Diaz forced keeper Mark Travers into a decent save after shoving his way into the box.
But, after Jefferson Lerma cleared an effort from the line and Solanke closed in, the visitors went further thanks to two goals in 10 minutes from Billing to seal a result that keeps them first in a promotion race exciting.
Blackburn boss Tony Mowbray: “It’s good to run, chase and tackle, but sometimes you play against better teams. We have already beaten Bournemouth this season, I understand, but they have very high quality players.
“We had chances and they had chances to score. We didn’t take ours and they took theirs.
“The more you try to attack to win a game, the more vulnerable you make yourself and I think that’s what happened today.
“Against the quality of Bournemouth, they punished us today, but I couldn’t question our team’s desire. We needed one of our chances to get in.
“Mid-February we were second in the league and it’s obviously frustrating to have missed the play-offs with a game to play. I feel like I’m leaving them with talent in this team and assets there .and hopefully they can continue to grow.”
Bournemouth boss Scott Parker: “Overall, it was a day that went according to plan in all aspects.
“We knew Blackburn would have to attack us. They needed a result with the position they were in.
“We had to be tough and diligent and all that side of the game, which we showed. We also knew that if it opened up, we had to be clinical. And we certainly were too.
“We needed every player to be shooting in the right direction and that has certainly been the case for a lot of the season. It was a high-pressure game. The result was key. Performance is secondary to that part of the game. season. But we got a result and we got a performance. We were lethal in our moments.
“I’ve been in football for a long time and there are only a limited number of teams that come to a point where they have opportunities to succeed. We have that opportunity, we have to take that, play with freedom. I thought we did it very well.”
- 25Van HeckeBooked at 52 mins
- 16WhartonBooked 15 mins away
- 8RothwellReplaced byDolanto 60′minutes
- 19HedgesBooked at 40 minsReplaced byPoveda-Ocampoto 60′minutes
- 21BuckleyBooked at 48 mins
- 9GallagherReplaced byDuckto 68′minutes
- 22Brereton Diaz
- 15A blacksmith
- 2PhillipsBooked 3 mins away
- 33ZemuraBooked at 87 mins
- 4Cook L
- tenChristieReplaced byMephamto 74′minutes
- 32AnthonyReplaced byDembeleto 63′minutes
- 9SolankeReplaced byLoweto 83′minutes
- Robert Jones
Match ends, Blackburn Rovers 0, Bournemouth 3.
Second Half ends, Blackburn Rovers 0, Bournemouth 3.
Foul by Bradley Dack (Blackburn Rovers).
Siriki Dembélé (Bournemouth) wins a free kick on the left wing.
Jordan Zemura (Bournemouth) is shown the yellow card for dangerous fouls.
Ian Poveda-Ocampo (Blackburn Rovers) wins a free kick on the right wing.
Foul by Jordan Zemura (Bournemouth).
Offside, Blackburn Rovers. Bradley Dack tries a through ball, but Ben Brereton Díaz is caught offside.
Replacement, Bournemouth. Jamal Lowe replaces Dominic Solanke.
Offside, Blackburn Rovers. Darragh Lenihan tries a through ball, but Bradley Dack is caught offside.
Goal! Blackburn Rovers 0, Bournemouth 3. Philip Billing (Bournemouth) scores with a left footed shot from the center of the penalty area to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Siriki Dembélé.
Offside, Blackburn Rovers. Darragh Lenihan tries a through ball, but Ben Brereton Díaz is caught offside.
Replacement, Bournemouth. Chris Mepham replaces Ryan Christie due to injury.
Corner, Blackburn Rovers. Corner conceded by Nathaniel Phillips.
Attempt blocked. Bradley Dack (Blackburn Rovers) right footed shot from the center of the box is blocked. Assisted by Lewis Travis with a cross.
Goal! Blackburn Rovers 0, Bournemouth 2. Philip Billing (Bournemouth) scores with a left footed shot from the center of the penalty area to the top left corner. Assisted by Dominic Solanke.
Replacement, Blackburn Rovers. Bradley Dack replaces Sam Gallagher.
Attempt saved. Dominic Solanke (Bournemouth) left footed shot from the center of the box is blocked in the center of the goal.
Failed attempt. Jefferson Lerma (Bournemouth) header from the center of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Ryan Christie from a cross from a corner.
Corner, Bournemouth. Corner conceded by Scott Wharton.