Speculation surrounding the immediate future of Burnley boss Eddie Howe has intensified in the last 24 hours.
Now though that return to his former club is looking more likely than not, with journalists at both end of the country indicating it may not be down to dotting the Is and crossing the Ts.
Chris Boden of the Burnley Express believes the likelihood of Eddie’s departure is now 99.9% - and Marvin Bartley could be part of the deal.
“Expecting whole thing to go through, just a case of when all is agreed/announced,” he tweeted. “And I believe Eddie will take Marvin Bartley with him.”
Bartley is expected to join Howe and his assistant Jason Tindall back in Bournemouth on loan until January, when a permanent deal will be concluded.
Howe took training at Gawthorpe this morning for what could be the final time. Boden will remain at Gawthorpe until mid-afternoon in hope of receiving further updates, with ‘no comment’ the official line from the Club at present.
It is believed that Howe failed to settle in the north and is keen on a return to the south coast – and the reported promise of a significant transfer budget must be tempting given the lack of resources made available at Turf Moor despite the £7m income from Jay Rodriguez’ move in the summer.
“Former Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe is set to return to the club if the Cherries can agree a compensation package with Burnley.
“Burnley midfielder Marvin Bartley, who also previously played for the club, is also set to return to the Goldsands Stadium, along with assistant manager Jason Tindall.”
Cherries chairman Eddie Mitchell, however, has denied any association of Bartley in any deal according to Neil Perrett of the Daily Echo, saying that the midfielder’s name had ‘not been discussed‘.
Eddie Howe refused to rule himself out of the running when rumours first erupted last week, saying instead: “I think this is a Bournemouth story and one I don’t think I should comment on.”
Eddie Mitchell was thought to have moved on and turned his attention to out of work managers but it is now believed he received encouragement from the north west to rekindle that early interest in Howe.
We asked Burnley fans for their views on Twitter and Facebook this lunchtime and the overwhelming feeling was that we will soon be searching for a new manager, while Bournemouth fans are in favour of the return.
No Nay Never ran a special feature yesterday assessing his tenure at Turf Moor and identifying a number of issues for his to address. 24 hour on it looks as though he won’t get to to carry any of them through.
Will you be sad to see him go? Do you think he may still stay? Comment below.