Bournemouth rode their luck, admits Howe
Eddie Howe highlighted an Andy Carroll miss and Callum Wilson's goal as the key moments in Bournemouth's 2-0 victory over West Ham and admitted his side got the slice of luck they needed following a bad run of form.
The Cherries went into the game having won just one of their previous seven Premier League matches, while West Ham arrived at Vitality Stadium on the back of an impressive 1-0 win over Arsenal.
But Howe's men battled hard to keep the Hammers' front four quiet and goalkeeper Artur Boruc made a crucial save from Carroll before Wilson broke the deadlock with a sweetly struck goal from the edge of the box.
Josh King made sure of the points with a 91st-minute tap-in and Howe told BBC Radio Solent: "What we got was that element of luck that we've been talking about.
"Carroll misses his chance, Callum takes his moments after, and that's the swing of the game - that can be the difference.
"The second goal is a great goal to see because it put the icing on the cake for us."
First win of 2019
First clean sheet of 2019
A goal each for the front men
Enjoy your Saturday night Cherries! pic.twitter.com/yXXiVT05RZ
— AFC Bournemouth (@afcbournemouth) January 19, 2019
After losing their last two matches of 2018 to Tottenham and Manchester United, Bournemouth started the new year with a draw at home to Watford and a defeat at Everton either side of a 3-1 reverse against Brighton and Hove Albion in the FA Cup.
Howe paid tribute to his players for remaining united through a difficult stage of the season after they reached 30 Premier League points.
"It has been a difficult run and we haven't enjoyed it for a second," said Howe.
"But we're in a tough league, an unforgiving place where if you're not quite at your best you'll be found out.
"If you change you lose everything and everything collapses around you. Then you've got no starting point. We always stick to what we do.
"We've been needing it for a few games, the feeling of winning that gives you self-worth and confidence, and that how you work and how you prepare and everything you do is a good way of working.
"The players needed that more than anybody as they've worked really hard during this spell and they haven't dropped their heads, they haven't ever been split or shown a bad attitude."
He added: "They kept going and got their rewards."