Thursday, 26 May 2016

What’s the real end game for Eddie Howe?

With only three English managers left in the Premier League it is no wonder that Bournemouth’s manager has been talked about in the national media as a coach that could go much further in the game. Danny Murphy and Jamie Redknapp been quick to try and ask whether Howe should be given a bigger job than AFC Bournemouth, but let’s look seriously at what he has on the south coast.

The Cherries are an up and coming team. He has built the squad and knows exactly what it is capable of and where he needs to develop it, which he can certainly do now with the lucrative funds that are coming into the club.
Even Eddie has to step up his performance next season.
Ambition is something Eddie Howe was questioned about before he finally took the Burnley job but by changing club you are entering a whole new set of variables that are difficult to evaluate from the outside. Eddie Howe has time on his side of course and might one day decide that he should face new experiences. He has repeated time and time again thought that he won’t move while Maxim Demin is in charge at the club and the duo seem set on taking the seasiders as far up the league as they can.

It was intriguing that Peak6 CEO, Matt Hulsizer, was outspoken enough earlier this year to ask why can’t the Cherries set their goal at winning the Premier League. It may not seem such a wild dream having seen what the Foxes have done, although Howe himself was quick to deny that they weren't a Leicester City in the making. If that is not the immediate goal then what is it?

Staying in the Premier League and developing the side and the club as a whole are the immediate aims, but with the ‘anything is possible’ tag attached to the club, have the fans really thought what can be achieved? What can a team of players who have come up through the leagues do together under a manager that only fears not winning? I think there is a freedom about what Eddie Howe can do now as his players know what he wants having been with him for a while. That should give him a freshness to experiment and test himself. He deserves to be given some time to see what he can do in familiar surroundings – he’s comfortable but knows that like all managers he is only as good as his last game.

Is there an end game then for Eddie? I suggest that he will know when that is but at the moment he is just getting familiar with the Premier League and its intricacies. Having completed a season in it he is now armed with far more knowledge about what is required to be a continued success. He has turned the team around when it has been on a bad run and has managed to overcome a season of injuries to key players, but the test that he will most want to achieve is longevity in the job. Luckily for AFCB fans he seems rather keen at doing that at Dean Court.

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