I have to say Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe continues to impress me as Premier League boss.
He seems to be a young boss with a very clear philosophy and major drive. The highly rated boss has built himself foundations of a very good team at Bournemouth.
The Cherries have gone from League One to an established Premier League side in less than a decade.
The work Howe has done on the south coast has been immense. This summer’s transfer dealings could go down as the best of his managerial career so far.
Learnt lessons from last summer
Howe seems to have been around forever. In terms of top-flight managers, Eddie Howe is still a relative youngster at 39-years of age. He is still learning his trade and last summer provided an expensive lesson for the boss and his club.
The Cherries splashed out big money by their standards on a whole host of players, including winger Jordon Ibe and central midfielder Lewis Cook. However, very few of the signings made an impact at the club and by the end of last season, Howe had reverted to the players that had previously brought the club success.
The Cherries have gone for quality over quantity this summer. In my opinion, they have made three brilliant signings in goalkeeper Asmir Begovic, defender Nathan Ake and striker Jermain Defoe.
The trio are players of a high calibre. The fact that they have joined the Cherries speaks volumes for how far the club have come in recent years and Howe’s personality.
Players that will heavily improve the team
A football manager’s job is to make sure their team is constantly improving. Last summer the Cherries made a few gambles in the transfer market.
However, the players that have arrived this summer are real Premier League players. What I mean by that is that they Premier League experience and would get into most teams outside the top-seven in the English top-flight.
Begovic was outstanding for Stoke City prior to moving to Chelsea. He was arguably one of the most reliable goalkeepers in the Premier League when he played for Stoke. The 30-year-old is highly experienced in both the English top-flight and the international game with Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Nathan Ake showed just how good a player he was during his loan spell on the south coast in the first half of last season. At 22 years old, he has the potential to become a very good player in the future.
Chelsea knew the youngsters potential, hence the reason for a buy-back clause in the Dutchman’s contract. I have no doubts he will be a regular starter and influential player for the Cherries next season.
Finally yet importantly is the signing of prolific England striker Jermain Defoe on a free transfer. Defoe’s signing could prove to be the best bit of business the Cherries have conducted this summer.
Even playing in a terrible Sunderland side last season the striker still scored 15 times in the top-flight.
In a Bournemouth team that creates far more chances, the striker could once again thrive in the Premier League next season. The veteran striker will be hoping to enjoy another prolific season, with the carrot of a potential place in England’s World Cup squad.
Bournemouth can finish in the top-ten once again
In reality, last season the gap between eighth place and 17th in the Premier League table was not massive. The Cherries finished ninth and everybody connected with the club will be hoping for a similar result this season.
The teams that finished below seventh have not massively improved their squads. In fact, Bournemouth have done the best business out of any of those teams in that group of clubs.
The Cherries are odds of 9/4 to finish in the Premier League’s top-ten next season, which is not an unrealistic expectation for Bournemouth.
As every season goes by Bournemouth and their highly rated boss seem to be getting more comfortable in their Premier League surroundings. From the signings the Cherries have made so far they are only going to be even more comfortable next season.
Can Bournemouth finish in the Premier League top-ten next season?
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