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OPPOSITION VIEW: AFC BOURNEMOUTH

27 August 2014

Essential reading on this weekend's opponents

AFC BOURNEMOUTH

Nickname: The Cherries
Manager: Eddie Howe
2013-14: 10th
Ground: Goldsands Stadium
Fastest road route from Carrow Road: 219 miles (3 hours 48 minutes)


THE LOWDOWN
Six years ago Bournemouth were on the brink of insolvency – but last season they were on the brink of having a serious shot at reaching the Premier League.

In the end, Eddie Howe’s team just missed out on a place in the Championship Play-Offs, finishing six points shy of the top six after one win in their final five matches.


They will have reflected with a keen sense of perspective, however, given that at the beginning of the 2008-09 campaign, they were hit with a 17-point deduction in League Two after failing to emerge from administration.

Howe, now in his second stint in charge at the south coast club after a brief spell with Burnley, led a miraculous survival campaign back then and they haven’t looked back since, flourishing thanks also in part to the Club’s ambitious Russian owner, Maxim Demin.

This season, the Cherries raced out of the blocks with a 4-0 win at Huddersfield Town on the opening day, and followed it up with a 1-0 victory over promoted Brentford at their Goldsands Stadium.

Two defeats since – to Nottingham Forest and Blackburn Rovers – have seen them slide into the middle of the embryonic Championship table, although they will join the Canaries in round three of the Capital One Cup after beating Exeter City and Northampton Town.


The departure of star striker Lewis Grabban to Carrow Road saw them delve into the transfer market, with Callum Wilson arriving from Coventry City. He’s scored four times up to now for his new club.

Bournemouth have two former Canaries in their current squad – goalkeeper Lee Camp (2006, 2013) and Elliott Ward (2010-13).
 
THE BOSS
Eddie Howe became the youngest manager in the Football League when he was appointed Bournemouth boss on a permanent basis in January 2009 at the age of just 31.

Taking over a club that had suffered a huge points deduction prior to that season and who faced the very real possibility of relegation to the Conference, Howe inspired them to survival and then promotion in his first full campaign despite operating under a transfer embargo.


After spurning the advances of several potential suitors, Howe left for Burnley in January 2011 having just managed his 100th Bournemouth game, a 2-1 defeat to Colchester United.

He returned to the Dorset club in October 2012, and later admitted that his decision to take the job at Turf Moor was the wrong one.

Bournemouth were 21st in League One when he reassumed the reins, but a run of eight wins from their last nine matches ensured they finished second and thus secured promotion to the Championship.

Howe played over 250 league games for the Cherries in two spells as a defender. He earned two caps for England’s Under-21s.

THE SQUAD
Goalkeepers: Lee Camp, Darryl Flahavan, Benji Buchel.

Defenders: Simon Francis, Steve Cook, Tommy Elphick (c), Ian Harte, Adam Smith, Elliott Ward, Baily Cargill.

Midfielders: Dan Gosling, Marc Pugh, Harry Arter, Charlie Daniels, Joe Partingdon, Shaun McDonald, Junior Stanislas, Ryan Fraser, Matt Ritchie, Eunan O’Kane.

Forwards: Tokelo Rantie, Brett Pitman, Callum Wilson, Yann Kermorgant.

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