Benik Afobe has enjoyed improving in the Premier League under Eddie Howe’s tutelage since arriving in 2016.
Born in London, he joined the Arsenal academy in May 2001 and went on to score 40 goals for the under-16s in the 2007/08 season, 11 goals for the under-17s in the 2008/09 season and 21 goals for the under-18s the following year.
After being voted as the Gunners’ under-18s Player of the Season, Afobe signed his first professional contract with the club in 2010. However, in a bid for first-team football, he was loaned out to six different clubs across six seasons.
The most successful of these was his spell at MK Dons during the 2014/15 season, where he netted 19 times in 30 appearances. The striker also bagged his first professional hat-trick whilst with the Dons, scoring three in a 6-0 win over Colchester United.
The second half of the 2014/15 campaign then saw the former England under-21 international sign permanently for Wolves. He netted his first goal for the club just three days later in a 2-0 home win against Blackpool, before going on to finish the season with 13 goals in 21 appearances for Kenny Jackett’s side.
Despite Premier League clubs after Afobe’s signature ahead of the 2015/16 season, he remained a Wolves player and already had 10 goals to his name before the turn of the year. As a result, it was Eddie Howe who came in for him in January, beating off stiff competition in the process.
Just two days after signing, Afobe made his debut for the Cherries, while his first goal arrived the following week in a 3-0 home win over Norwich.
After helping Bournemouth remain in the Premier League at the end of the 2015/16 campaign, last season’s goals against the likes of Swansea, Watford and Liverpool were enough to ensure the same outcome for a second successive season.