CAPE TOWN – Eddie Howe left his job as Bournemouth manager by mutual consent on Saturday, saying it was the right time for the club to have a change following their relegation from the Premier League.
Bournemouth’s five-year stint in the top division ended on the final day of the season after they finished third-bottom in the standings with 34 points.
Howe, 42, departed after a discussion with Bournemouth officials, the club announced in a statement.
“Having spent a total of 25 years with the club as both a player and a manager this decision – made together with the club – is one of the hardest I’ve ever had to make,” he said.
“However, although the affection and love I have for this football club will always remain, we collectively feel that now is the right time for the club to go in a new direction.
He wanted to write to everyone associated with the club in his own words.
Please read this letter from Eddie after the unbelievable journey we've all been on ❤️ 🖤 https://t.co/7ouQas89bH
— AFC Bournemouth (@afcbournemouth) August 1, 2020
“I have always ensured that every decision I have ever made as manager has been in the best interests of the club and its supporters, and this is no different.”
Howe managed Bournemouth in more than 450 games across two spells at the Vitality Stadium spanning more than a decade.
The Englishman was initially appointed as a caretaker manager in December 2008, and defied expectations to secure the club’s safety in League Two despite starting the season on -17 points.
He then went on to win promotion to League One the following season.
After a brief spell as Burnley manager, Howe returned to guide the Cherries to the Premier League in 2015, where they remained for five seasons.
“Eddie Howe is synonymous with this football club, both as a player and a manager, and that will never change,” Bournemouth chief executive Neill Blake said.
“He is quite simply a Bournemouth legend, having helped transform the identity and history of the club.”