AFC Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe’s managerial journey so far is already worthy of a movie script and he has just begun his career. Howe is just 37 and probably has at-least 2 decades of managing ahead of him. 7 years ago, Bournemouth were in the fourth division starting with minus 17 points and about to exit the Football League. Today, Bournemouth sit 10th in the Premier League. This is stuff of dreams and they have one man to thank – Eddie Howe.
When Eddie Howe was given his first managerial role of a senior team, it wasn’t exactly how he would have dreamt about it. In the 2008-09 season, Bournemouth were in England’s 4th division and to make things worse, they were made to start the season on minus 17 points due to certain financial issues. Despite the deficit, Howe miraculously saved the team from relegation, finishing 21st. This was signs of things to come and the start of a dream run.
The very next season, Eddie Howe leads his team to a second place finish, thus earning promotion into League One, England’s third division. It was then that he left the Cherries to join Championship side Burnley for a 18-month spell after which, he came back to the club he loved for a second stint – a journey that will take him into the history books.
In his return to Bournemouth in the 2012-13 season, Eddie Howe guided them to yet another promotion, finishing runners-up behind Doncaster Rovers. Howe had taken Bournemouth from the brink of exiting the Football League to the second tier and you’d think that is huge in itself, but Eddie Howe just kept on improving. His first season in the Championship, the 2013-14 season, Bournemouth finished 10th, just a mere 6 points off the play-off spots.
An year later, Bournemouth and Eddie Howe were on the lips of thousands of astounded football fans as they watched them being crowned champions of England’s second tier and secure yet another promotion – this time to the biggest of them all, the Premier League.
In 2015, Eddie Howe was showered with honours and deservingly so. He was awarded the LMA Manager of the Year award, beating the likes of Premier League winning Jose Mourinho. He was also awarded the inaugural Football League Manager of the Decade award.
A man of a few words, Eddie Howe is the kind who does his talking out on the pitch. He has a calm look on his face and never gets too animated in the technical area. He is a quiet family man with a aura of calmness and wisdom around him. Eddie Howe has the letter R tattooed on his arm, which is in fond memory of a labrador named Rodney he used to own.
The Eddie Howe story so far has turned quite a lot of important heads and he has firmly established himself as one of the best young managers in the game today. It shouldn’t be surprising if some of the big clubs come knocking on Bournemouth’s door for their gem of a manager, but Howe’s loyalty could just be too strong for him to leave the club where he spent most of both his playing and managing careers.
It is obvious that Eddie Howe can’t stay away from Bournemouth for too long. A local lad, having joined the Bournemouth youth system at the age of 14, he made it into the first team at 17 in 1994. He went on to play for the Cherries till 2002, before Harry Redknapp took him away to Portsmouth. But the bond between Howe and Bournemouth was too strong and so he returned two years later for a second spell.
It was nearly a Deja Vu moment when the same thing happened in his managerial life. Having spent his first few seasons with the Cherries, he moved to Burnley, but as history had it, he duly returned soon after.
Eddie Howe is Bournemouth through and through. Don’t put it past him to produce miracles in the Premier League too. Definitely, a manager with true greatness ahead of him.
(Image Credits : Bournemouth Official Website)