Bournemouth fan Nick Case gives his view on a potential Dean Court return for Eddie Howe.
Since Paul Groves’ departure at lunch time, there have been many Bournemouth fans batting about ideas as to who could be being lined up to replace him. Names like Glenn Hoddle, Alan Curbishley and Harry Redknapp have been popular whilst some fans (myself included) have hinted at a possible return for fans favourite Eddie Howe. Of course Howe is currently under contract at Burnley which would seem to make a return unlikely, or would it?
This evening after much speculation, tweets from Bournemouth Daily Echo reporters Neil Meldrum and Neil Perrett have all but confirmed that an approach is being thought out and Eddie has emerged as the Bournemouth board’s first choice as manager.
As always with football fans opinions differ. One Cherries fan tweeted, “Will take a bit for me to forgive Eddie after the manner of his departure,” and another said that he hopes “for Eddie’s sake that he does not come back,” due to his love for AFCB having extinguished somewhat over the course of this season. My personal opinion is that I would love Eddie back and I would say that 95 per cent of Bournemouth fans would agree. The legacy that he left here almost saw us promoted in 2011 when Bradbury took on his team riding high in the league to the play-offs only to narrowly miss out against Huddersfield. But since then players have left, money has come in from Russia and the heart and soul has been ripped out of the club from top to bottom. Many fans have stopped attending in protest while those who have come have voiced their anger in other ways.
My belief is that Mitchell has realised that he lost the fans when Howe left and the only way to win them back is to get his man back at the helm, and I do find it interesting that he is yet to announce who will be in caretaker charge for Saturday’s game at Coventry.
Of course it is not as simple as Howe just saying ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to any approach as he is under contract at Turf Moor and will not be allowed to just leave without a fight. It will also take some persuasion from our chairman as it is strongly understood that Howe did not necessarily leave on good terms last time around. Mitchell will have to promise to keep out of the dressing room and to put Howe in full, unequivocal charge of the playing sides of things. It is also important that Tindall is part of any deal.
Will he be a success again? I hope so – and I also honestly think he will. We have spent outrageous amounts of money on players but have not had the man to lead them, something which has seen us have one of our worst starts in recent memory. Eddie is Bournemouth through and through, a comeback for him would see the atmosphere return to Dean Court and I believe so would the belief amongst the players. He would be the man to turn our season around. He has not set the world alight in Lancashire by any means but that does not make him a bad manager. Sometimes the face just does not fit. If he came back he would demand the respect of the players because of just how much he means to the club and the positivity that would surround his appointment would make it difficult for the players not to respond.
There is one thing for sure and that is that if any new appointment would unite the AFC Bournemouth fans once again, this would be it. And my understanding is that many Burnley fans would not be too fussed if he were to go.