With the recent EC Group Cup declared a success, with AFC Bournemouth picking up £45,000 prize money for coming 2nd, Eddie Mitchell is hoping that the event is going to be an annual event in the Dean Court calendar.
Speaking in the Bournemouth Evening Echo, the Cherries Chairman is quoted as saying: "The sponsors loved the weekend and are anxious to do another tournament next season and I think they might try to get bigger teams over. They are more than pleased to put up the prize money again which is very good. I think it will be an annual thing but we might get a couple of higher-profile clubs. They thought it was really professional and I think one or two of them were very interested in what possibilities and links they could have with the club".
On the potential of Russian investment at Dean Court, Mitchell goes on to say that: "They were pretty taken aback with the way the tournament was organised, how the ground appeared to them, how the staff addressed everything and how they were hosted. They were impressed and were very interested to find out what we were doing at the South End, and seemed very interested with all of the club and wanted more details. I think there is every chance of taking it further. If you are encouraging somebody to invest, you have got to give them some sort of return. But I don't think they are really looking for the return financially. They just like the hospitality and I think they would like to come over more often. It is only about a four-hour flight and 90 minutes from the airport. It is not the end of the world to get here and I think they fell in love with the place. They certainly fell in love with the accommodation where they stayed and the venues they went to in the evenings".