Bournemouth hits new highs

December 17, 2016
Burnley's George Boyd (right), in action during the English Premier League match between Burnley v AFC Bournemouth at Turf Moor stadium, Burnley, England. last Saturday.
AFC Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe shouts instructions from the touchline during the English Premier League soccer match against Burnley at Turf Moor, Burnley, England, last Saturday.
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Eddie Howe's reputation as one of English football's brightest coaches was already soaring when the Bournemouth manager's credentials were further championed in an unusual public arena.

In a diversion to a recent parliamentary hearing into footballer's integrity issues, a legislator suddenly advanced the case for Howe to become England coach.

"Someone like that," English Football Association chairman Greg Clarke responded, "you don't want to burn by overexposing them too early."

Howe, though, can't escape exposure when he's achieving remarkable results with his small club in a southern seaside town, and operating with moderate resources compared to the rest of the Premier League.

Liverpool found that out to its cost two weeks ago when it surrendered a 3-1 lead to lose 4-3 at Bournemouth's tiny ground with a capacity of around 11,000.

Although the 39-year-old Howe was overlooked for the England vacancy, his time will undoubtedly come on the international stage. For now, the big time for Howe is Bournemouth an unthinkable proposition when he was coaching the team in the fourth tier in 2010.

With a 1-0 victory over defending Premier League champion Leicester, Leicester briefly climbed Tuesday to eighth place the highest the club, which was formed as Boscombe St. John's Institute in 1890, has ever been.

Bournemouth's next test tomorrow is a derby match against south-coast rival against Southampton. Only goal difference is keeping Bournemouth behind Southampton, which has just enjoyed its first foray into the Europa League after expertly balancing the selling of players for big profits with finding equally valuable replacements.

There's now talk at Bournemouth of emulating Southampton by qualifying for Europe for the first time.

"The club's come so far so quickly, sometimes it's maybe nice for others to sit back and enjoy the position we're in," Howe said.

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