Bournemouth boss Andoni Iraola claimed his maiden Premier League victory at the 10th time of asking with a 2-1 comeback win over Burnley thanks to a sensational 40-yard lob by Philip Billing and a lengthy video assistant referee call.
While internally Iraola had been under no pressure at Vitality Stadium, the noise externally was growing after the Cherries suffered a late defeat to Wolves last weekend, but they bounced back in style against a relegation rival.
It was actually Burnley who went ahead in the 11th minute when Charlie Taylor opened his account for the club on his 198th appearance with a sweet strike, but Antoine Semenyo’s fine solo effort ensured it was all square at half-time.
No winner appeared likely in the pouring rain with Clarets goalkeeper James Trafford impressive, but after the visitors gave away possession inside their own half, Billing spotted the England Under-21 international off his line and chipped the ball home from range.
Bournemouth did require VAR to intervene after Jay Rodriguez found the net late on but – after six minutes of deliberation by David Coote at Stockley Park – it was eventually ruled out for offside to give Bournemouth all three points.
With Cherries captain Neto out injured, a Premier League debut was given to on-loan Inter Milan goalkeeper Andrei Radu, but the majority of action early on was in the visitors’ half.
Poor passes by Billing and Marcus Tavernier halted dangerous Bournemouth attacks before the latter had a free-kick punched over by Clarets stopper Trafford.
It was a superb long-range pass by Trafford that helped get Vincent Kompany’s side on the front foot again and they took the lead through an unlikely source in the 11th minute.
From Burnley’s second corner in quick succession, Johann Gudmundsson’s delivery was only partially cleared by Illia Zabarnyi to Dara O’Shea, who cushioned a header into the path of Taylor and the left-back rifled home with a sweet strike from 22 yards to score for the first time since 2015.
Burnley’s joy should have been shortlived when the recalled Semenyo was played in down the right and picked out Tavernier, but the left winger side-footed into the ground and over from six yards.
Semenyo had been Bournemouth’s brightest attacker though and it was no surprise when he conjured up the equaliser.
Taylor was at fault after Semenyo robbed the goalscorer of possession before he waltzed into the area and steered a left-footed shot through O’Shea’s legs to level after 22 minutes.
Buoyed by the equaliser, Bournemouth finished the half strongly with Chris Mepham’s header tipped over by Trafford, but it remained 1-1 at the break.
Kompany had seen enough and introduced Rodriguez for the anonymous Zeki Amdouni during the interval, although it failed to have the desired effect.
Trafford continued to be the busier of the two goalkeepers, but punched away another Tavernier cross before he blocked Semenyo’s close-range effort to keep his side in it.
Sander Berge was thrown on by Kompany on the hour mark with the match appearing to peter out to a draw, but Billing had other ideas.
After Vitinho gave away the ball under pressure by the halfway line, Billing controlled and lobbed over Trafford from 40 yards before he displayed a T-shirt which read ‘we are the children, we are the world’, in celebration.
The drama was not over there with Rodriguez able to find the net in the 89th minute although the assistant referee immediately put his flag up.
VAR reviewed the incident and after a six-minute check it was finally deemed offside before Bournemouth were indebted to Radu, who saved two efforts by Berge deep into stoppage-time to secure a priceless win for Iraola’s men.