The Bournemouth fixture always puts me in a reflective mood.

It seems a lifetime ago that the appointment of Eddie Howe, Jason Tindall and their coaching staff was unveiled to an eager Clarets press room.

It didn’t work out for them and Burnley were left in the unenviable position of having to unearth another gem of a manager. One who could work within the strict budgets and the sensible business model imposed by the board.

I don’t need to remind you what happened next. Sean Dyche was that man. 

Eight seasons, two promotions and one Europa League qualification later, Dyche lined up on the touchline at the weekend as one of the two longest-serving managers in the Premier League.

Impressive enough when you take into account the unforgiving nature of the top flight but even more so when you remember that Dyche also survived a relegation.

As it turned out, Howe’s Bournemouth side were treated to a lesson in aptitude, passion, commitment and professionalism.

It is perhaps harsh to criticise this Bournemouth side too much. They have, of course, been safe for some time now and it must be a challenge asking your players to keep pushing at the back end of a long season.

But sadly, for the watching Cherries’ fans anyway, our boys had no problem at all in adopting that ‘strong jaw’ mentality and took full advantage of the opportunity placed in front of them.

Even following the most unfortunate of own goals by our Ashley (Barnes), not one head dropped.

I don’t remember ever seeing us so determined to get our noses back in front and I took particular pleasure in seeing Charlie Taylor teach the Premier League how to play to a whistle.

It is impossible to single out one individual player, but special mention has to go to our other Ashley, Westwood, whose fine goal put the icing on the cake of a fantastic season for him. He has filled a very large Joey-Barton-shaped hole in the centre of our midfield.

We still have work to do to secure a fourth consecutive season in the top flight but with the Wolves and Bournemouth wins, we took a huge steps towards that prize.

And suddenly that Cardiff game looks a little less terrifying than it did two weeks ago.

Classy Burnley. Very classy.


Natalie Bromley is editor of the No Nay Never Podcast