DAN Gosling has urged Cherries to improve on their ninth-place Premier League finish after the fixtures for the 2017-18 season were released yesterday.

While Gosling admits he still feels a frisson of excitement when poring over the glamour clashes presented by a top-flight campaign, he insists there is nothing to fear from any of the challenges ahead.

Cherries launch the new season with a trip to West Brom on Saturday, August 12. West Ham visit Vitality Stadium on Boxing Day, the date Gosling first turned his eye to, while Eddie Howe's side will wrap up the campaign with a match at the manager's former club, Burnley, on Sunday, May 13.

Gosling told the Daily Echo: "For a club of our size, and where we have come from, finishing ninth was a huge achievement and one that should be remembered for a long time.

"But each year we try to better what we have done before. We did that last season and now we will aim to finish even higher.

"Hopefully, we will bring in some quality players over the summer and improve the squad again.

"Every game is tough. We have been to all the grounds now and we know what to expect when we go back to them, so we will be even better prepared next year.

"I always look at who we are playing over the Christmas period first, then who we start and finish the season against. Everything else takes care of itself."

Gosling has only one year remaining on the four-year deal he signed when Eddie Howe brought him to the club from Newcastle in 2014.

He hopes to have agreed fresh terms in time for the big kick-off and is already getting a head start on his preparations for the new campaign, when he expects a ferocious battle for Cherries' midfield spots.

"I think everyone was in need of a break," continued Gosling. "I was glad when the season was over and we had finished where we did.

"It is good to get some time off – and we are back in before we know it anyway!

"Most of the lads start ticking over a couple of weeks before we are in for pre-season training.

"I don't do anything in the first two weeks of the holiday but I start ticking over in the middle of June."

Boss Howe is a notoriously tough training ground taskmaster and unlikely to ease off in readiness for an intense campaign, which features four games in nine days around the turn of the year.

Nevertheless, Gosling admits he is actually looking forward to the pre-season slog.

He added: "It is always good going back and seeing the lads again. When you are with people every day you do tend to miss them, to be honest.

"You get used to going in and having the banter. It will be good to see everyone.

"I enjoy the few weeks off but then I am raring to go again."