Callum Wilson ended his nine-month injury nightmare with a match-winning display as Bournemouth booked a place in the Carabao Cup quarter-finals with this victory over Middlesbrough.
For Garry Monk’s Boro, although always a tough task travelling to Premier League opponents, this was a sixth game in a row without a victory, a sequence stretching back to the previous-round victory over Championship rivals Aston Villa.
Striker Wilson, making his first appearance since suffering knee ligament damage in January, rolled home the Cherries’ second goal from the penalty spot before teeing up substitute Benik Afobe for the clincher.
Debutant defender Jack Simpson had earlier volleyed the hosts into the lead at the Vitality Stadium before they were pegged back by a first senior goal from Boro teenager Marcus Tavernier.
Bournemouth made eight changes to their starting lineup for the match, while defender Daniel Ayala was the only Middlesbrough player retained from Saturday’s Championship defeat to Cardiff.
The hosts, on the back of Saturday’s morale-boosting Premier League win at Stoke, dominated the ball in the opening 20 minutes and had numerous chances to edge in front.
French forward Lys Mousset had the ball in the net with six minutes played, heading in Ryan Fraser’s left-wing free-kick before rightly being denied his first Cherries goal by an offside flag. Bournemouth centre-back Simpson, making his first professional appearance, then nodded narrowly wide from a Fraser corner, before Mousset’s strike partner Wilson was inches wide with a shot on the turn.
Boro, relegated from the top flight last season, were thrashed 4-0 when they visited the Vitality Stadium in April, but they showed more resilience on this occasion.
The 2004 League Cup winners tested Artur Boruc at the other end through Connor Roberts’s powerful drive from distance before the lively Adama Traore almost broke the deadlock on the stroke of half-time.
Ex-Barcelona youth player Traore dispossessed Dan Gosling in the centre of midfield, advanced forward and then unleashed a stinging drive that whistled narrowly wide of Boruc’s goal.
After their performance tailed off in the opening period, Bournemouth again began brightly after the restart and went ahead in the 49th minute.
Fraser swung over a corner from the left and 20-year-old Simpson held off the attentions of his marker to steer home from close range.
The midweek cup tie represented a 650-mile round trip for Boro’s fans, with many leaving Teesside at 10.30am.
They were rewarded for their efforts with an equalising goal seven minutes later.
Eighteen-year-old winger Tavernier claimed it, calmly sliding into the bottom right corner following Traore’s pacey run and precise through ball.
Boro’s leveller was ultimately in vain, however, as Wilson turned on the style at the other end.
The former Coventry man restored the home side’s lead with 15 minutes remaining, coolly converting a spot-kick into the bottom right corner after Simpson was pulled back in the area by Dael Fry.
And, eight minutes later, he ensured Eddie Howe’s men a place in the last eight for the second time in four seasons as he burst into the area and squared the ball for Afobe to tap home.
Elsewhere, Bristol City claimed a third successive Premier League scalp as they moved effortlessly into the quarter-finals at Ashton Gate.
After knocking out Watford and then Stoke, the Sky Bet Championship club saw off top-flight strugglers Crystal Palace after first-half goals from Matty Taylor and Milan Djuric sent them on the their way to a 4-1 win.
Jesse Lingard scored twice as holders and Europa League champioms Manchester United won 2-0 at Swansea.
Lingard broke the deadlock in the 21st minute and then headed in a second on the hour as Jose Mourinho’s men looked to move on from Saturday’s Premier League defeat at Huddersfield.
Teenage striker Eddie Nketiah came off the bench to score twice on his home debut and send Arsenal into the quarter-finals of the Carabao Cup at the expense of Norwich. The England Under-19 international had played just a minute of first-team football for the Gunners before his introduction saw Arsenal come from behind and win 2-1 after extra-time.