A 6-3 humbling by Everton on Saturday has left AFC Bournemouth without a win since December and hovering above the relegation zone, with four places separating them and the drop.
Saturday was a culmination of a miserable few months for the Cherries, whose last win came against fellow strugglers Leicester City almost two months ago.
Bournemouth have enjoyed a remarkable rise to the premier league, climbing several leagues in a matter of seasons and are now beginning to challenge fellow south-coast rivals Southampton, and totally eclipsing Portsmouth who are languishing at the bottom of the football league.
The Cherries have also boasted a much larger financial outlay than either of their south-coast neighbours since their arrival in the premier league and now have to ponder whether such an outlay merits a more secure position in England’s top flight.
Eddie Howe spoke after the defeat to Everton: “It’s a tough one for us to take. We will bounce back, I have no doubt over my team’s ability to get out of this difficult period.”