Irish youngster Mark Travers marks winning Premier League debut for Bournemouth with man of the match performance
Republic of Ireland youngster Mark Travers turned in a man of the match performance after he was handed a surprise Premier League debut for Bournemouth against Tottenham.
The ex-Shamrock Rovers teenager made an instant impression with a string of impressive first-half saves in what he described as an "unbelievable" debut.
Travers, 19, was included in Mick McCarthy's Ireland squad for the Euro 2020 qualifiers in March and earned his first-team chance after making a big impression straining with the Bournemouth first team.
"We rate him very highly,” Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe told Sky Sports. "He's a great character. He’s got a great attitude. Very good goalkeeper, huge potential. This is a chance for him to show what he can do."
At 19 years and 351 days, Travers is the first teenage goalkeeper to start a Premier League game since Joe Hart in October 2006 and this could be an audition or Travers to land the Bournemouth keepers' jersey on a regular basis, with experienced duo Asmir Begovic and Arter Boruc expected to move on this summer.
Travers was nearly beaten by a shot unleashed by Lucas Moura from the half-way line as he was caught off his line in the opening exchanges, before his started to show his class with a series of saves to deny Tottenham.
Moura and Dele Alli were twice denied by the former Cherry Orchard and Shamrock Rovers starlet, as he justified his selection with some eye-catching stops.
With Spurs being reduced to nine men following red cards for Son Heung-min and Juan Foyth on either side of half-time, Travers had a far quieter second half but stayed solid to keep his clean sheet before Nathan Ake finally sealed the points for Bournemouth with a stoppage-time header.