The return of Eddie and Jase with a few new player additions finally produced the season to remember. An unbeaten streak beginning with their return was one of the best in our histories, and but for a blip of 5 defeats on the bounce, promotion and the title would have been resolved much sooner. As it was, a run of 8 consecutive wins in the run-in saw us promoted with a game to spare. A last day draw at Tranmere and a last gasp winner for Donny at Brentford deprived us of the title but did little to dampen the end of season party.
As the song says, Bournemouth ‘are on their way’.
So thoughts turn to the new season that is now just 4 weeks away. It has been 23 years since we last graced this level. In Eddie Howe we have an experienced manager for the division. His time at Burnley will serve us well hopefully and we will hit the ground running. The lack of any meaningful pre-season transfer activity at this point is a concern as is the worry on how a club of our size and resource can afford some of the transfer fees mooted or wages demanded. Nevertheless it is apparent our Russian benefactor is still committed to the club and the incredible journey we are on. Long may he do so.
Ian Harte is a useful addition and with other big names being mentioned then I am convinced new names will be seen and some faces will depart. But our squad is strong together and the lads have shown great spirit and camaraderie to get us where we are today. I have every confidence that the current squad plus a quality striker will see us have enough in our armoury to hold our own.
Outside of say a top 6 or 8 teams then I would put us on a par with many of the others with nothing to fear. As a new team and with a small stadium this should allow us the element of surprise to many clubs at the outset. I am excited for the season ahead with some fantastic stadia’s to visit and attractive footballing teams to Dean Court. I hope the public back the club in numbers and we see 10,000+ attendances, if only to justify Max’s investment in our club.
We are punching well above our weight but I feel that in Eddie & Jase we have 2 leaders who have the experience and determination to make sure we can mount a credible challenge and see us stay in the Championship come May 2014.
So I look forward to seeing you at some point on our travels or at Dean Court and here’s hoping for another fantastic successful season. We are on our way and it remains up the Cherries in all departments.
Nick Wallinger (Chairman)