Bournemouth completely outclassed Hull City to pick up a 6-1 win in Mike Phelan’s first match in permanent charge of the Tigers.
Phelan was finally confirmed as Hull head coach this week, but the dogged defensive solidity he had inspired in the early weeks of the season melted away at the Vitality Stadium as Eddie Howe’s side ran rampant.
As talk swells of Howe’s long-term prospects of taking the England job, the Cherries’ win was built on home-grown talent – all six goals of theirs were scored by Englishmen.
Wingers Junior Stanislas and Jordon Ibe were the stars of the show and Stanislas had a hand in all three of the Cherries first-half goals, converting a penalty after Charlie Daniels and Steve Cook efforts had sandwiched a Ryan Mason strike.
Stanislas capped a brilliant performance with another goal after the interval before Callum Wilson and Dan Gosling completed the rout as Hull utterly wilted.
With England in the midst of their post-Sam Allardyce transition, the likes of Stanislas, Ibe and Wilson could have reasonable hopes of international recognition on the evidence of this vibrant performance.
The Cherries’ third successive Premier League win on home turf lifts them into the top half, but Hull must regain focus, having picked up a solitary point from their last 18 available.
Ibe began a half of intense menace with a pair of darting runs that unnerved the visiting backline and jitters were on show as Bournemouth took a fifth-minute lead.
Stanislas’ 25-yard free-kick hit the woodwork, but Hull goalkeeper David Marshall ran around his post, appearing to think the ball had gone wide, and Daniels was well-positioned to turn a smart half-volley into the unguarded net.
Ibe was at the heart of everything good for Bournemouth, squaring for Wilson to hit the bar before fizzing an effort of his own just over the crossbar from 30 yards.
Making his 200th Bournemouth appearance, Cook erred as he gave away possession to Hull before deflecting Mason’s strike beyond Artur Boruc to gift Hull an undeserved equaliser, but the defender quickly redeemed himself, losing his marker to powerfully head Bournemouth back ahead.
And Hull were in meltdown three minutes later as Robert Snodgrass rashly slid into Wilson inside the penalty area and Stanislas emphatically drilled home from 12 yards.
Howe’s side kept at it after the interval as Cook, Jack Wilshere and Ibe went close before Andy Robertson’s withdrawal forced Hull to move Sam Clucas to a makeshift left-back and the hosts swiftly took advantage.
Adam Smith and substitute Josh King ran rings around Clucas on the flank before the ball was crossed for Stanislas to smash beyond Marshall at his near post.
Wilshere remains without a first full game in two years, though his replacement – Gosling – made an impression with a curled finish after Wilson earned reward for an outing of endeavour and intelligence, nodding home unmarked after Hull again abandoned duties in defence.
Michael Dawson was spotted on the bench at the Vitality Stadium and Phelan will pine for the former England man’s return on the evidence of a torrid display.