Team Highlight : A.F.C. Bournemouth

Bournemouth will be promoted to the Premier League after their win in the 2014/2015 season Championship. Photo: premierskillsenglish

AFC Bournemouth also known as The Cherries, is a professional football club based in Kings Park, Bournemouth, playing in the Championship, the second tier in the English football league system. Founded in 1899, the club has since had ups and downs following the club’s history and only managed a 9th best position on their road to the Premier League table. Today, the club’s kit is a red shirt with black stripes but it had a few changes prior, originally spotted in red shirts with white sleeves and even a predominant red shirt between 2004-2006 seasons before reverting to the current selection due to fan demand.   

Origin of A.F.C. Bournemouth

First team of Bournemouth back in 1899. Photo: bournemouthecho.co.uk 

Before there was AFC Bournemouth, Boscombe St. Johns Institute Football Club were playing in local football but thereafter, the football club disbanded with enthusiastic players still in the club. In what is now known as the origins of AFC Bournemouth, these players then went on to form Boscombe FC, a name to better represent the district, and was renamed to Boscombe Athletic Football Club in 1923 and streamlined to AFC Bournemouth as the club progressed. 

In 1910, the club was given a piece of land with a long-term lease for a wasteland next to Kings Park by their then president Mr. J.E. Cooper-Dean. With their own ground, AFC Bournemouth named the stadium Dean Court after the benefactor and the club continued to thrive and dominated the local football scene. At about the same time, the club was given the nickname “The Cherries” due to two factors. Firstly, the Cooper-Dean estate was known to house numerous cherry orchards where Dean Court was built across and secondly, the club’s red striped shirts that the team played in also coincidentally resembled the same shade of red as cherries.  

Records over the years

 Bournemouth winning the Football League two at home. Photo: timetoast.com 

In his stint as manager from 1984-1987, under the direction of Harry Redknapp, Bournemouth managed a famous victory over Manchester United, and for the first time in the club’s history, being promoted to tier two of the English League. However, things started to go downhill for him with losses resulting in the infamous Leeds Bournemouth Riot 1990 which led to the eventual resignation in 1992. 

The years 1992-2009 saw a crisis looming over the club’s future with constant change in managers due to the lack of wins and consistently being ranked at the bottom of the table. To make matters worse, Bournemouth was forced into administration in 2008 and was handed a 17-point penalty for not following the Football League Insolvency Rules. These took a turn for the better when in 2009 Bournemouth managed to secure their Football League status by winning Grimsby Town in what is now known as “The Great Escape”. 

While Bournemouth has never won a major trophy in English football League or Championship, they do boast of having won the Football League Trophy which is played by lower league teams. The goal of reaching the top of the Premier League table was brought closer when they successfully won the Championship in 2015/2016 season and got promoted to the Premier League. Since then, the club has remained in Premier League football

Present Day A.F.C. Bournemouth 

 Eddie Howe: The first manager that led Bournemouth to the Premier League
Photo: premierskillsenglish 

Since the introduction of Eddie Howe to Bournemouth as manager, nothing was stopping Bournemouth’s path towards the Premier League. Prior to his role in management, Howe was in the lineup of Bournemouth and moved around clubs on loan before having to retire due to a knee injury. His first contact with coaching was with the AFC Bournemouth reserve team and was subsequently hired as caretaker manager. 

The then 31 year old manager continued to gain attention when he helped with the promotion of the club to the third level of English football followed by impressive performance from the football club following the 2008 season. Thereafter, he was automatically instated as the manager of Bournemouth and is also the man responsible for the continued success of promotions throughout the leagues and championships of English football where he eventually led the club to the Premier League

Despite Howe achieving one of the best results in the club’s modern history, and also managing to keep the club safe from relegation for five years, there will not be a sixth for him as Bournemouth will move ahead with Jason Tindall, the club’s current assistant manager for the 2020 season after being relegated yet again from the Premier League.