Yesterday it was reported that Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe was in contention of being a top candidate for the Arsenal job, after Arsene Wenger eventually leaves his post at the club. Arsenal fans have debated the possibility of having the likes of Simeone and Low at the helm of Arsenal football club, but it is a manager closer to home that may be the firm favourite for the position come May.
Eddie Howe has achieved plenty of success with Bournemouth, having first joined the club in a managerial position back in 2008. Apart from a brief spell at Burnley, Howe’s Bournemouth side has achieved promotion from League Two all the way up to the Premier League and that is not a feat many managers can contend with. Howe has been linked a lot with the Arsenal job in recent weeks, however in a recent interview he has made it very clear that it is in his interests to remain with Bournemouth and be completely focused on the Cherries for the course of the season.
During the managers pre-match press conference, Howe was asked about his future and he said: “I’d rather be linked doing something right than the other way, but my only focus is winning with Bournemouth. I am loyal. I love the town and I want to continue that association for as long as possible.”
Specifically on the link to the Arsenal job, Howe was quick to add: “It’s meaningless. I don’t want to hear it. I don’t need to hear it. I just want to win games. It’s very hard to predict the future. If you try to then you come unstuck. In football management, you live week to week. You turn a blind eye to speculation and anyone that tells me about it. I believe it is not meaningful and it doesn’t help me get results for this club.”
Eddie Howe certainly seems to show his loyalty to the club and having spent the majority of both his professional playing and managerial career with the Cherries, I truly do believe him when he says he wants to stay with the club for as long as possible. However as he rightly says, in football management, a career is lived week by week, preparing for your next opponents and not looking too far into the future. The link with the Arsenal managerial job is no means in the immediate future, Wenger will more than likely still be at the club come the last day of the season, however the future is approaching just close enough that it is now on the horizon.
In my opinion out of all the realistic candidates there are for the Arsenal job post Wenger, I think Eddie Howe may truly be a potential consideration. Howe does not have the experience as a manager at the top level such as on the international stage nor a club with European football, whilst his experience in the top tier of English football isn’t the greatest either, however we must remember that when the board committed to Arsene Wenger back in 1996, he too did not have any of that experience. Howe is a young manager, who has achieved a lot of success on the south coast, so perhaps it wouldn’t be such a surprise if we see these links with Howe continue throughout the season.