LONDON — Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe will keep faith with his Championship-winning squad rather than investing in big-money signings when they play in the English top flight for the first time in their 116-year history next season.
Bournemouth were crowned second-tier champions on Saturday after a 3-0 win over Charlton Athletic helped them finish the season with 90 points, one ahead of Watford, who conceded in stoppage time to draw 1-1 with Sheffield Wednesday.
Howe’s attentions have now turned to the Premier League and the 37-year-old said the majority of his side will be given the chance to prove themselves despite the club receiving a potential promotion cash boost of more than £120 million (R2,2 billion).
“You can see from my track record with these guys that those who have performed so well will get an opportunity to perform,” Howe said.
“I don’t believe in wholesale changes in the close season. I don’t believe in not giving the players a chance to show whether they are good enough.
“Ultimately they have to take that opportunity. We stuck with the majority of the squad from League One to the Championship. There will be subtle changes, there will be players coming in, there will be players leaving, but the core group will remain the same.”
Howe said being promoted as champions was a welcome reward for his players’ hard work this season.
“I do think we deserve it,” Howe said. “In my opinion, we have been the best team this season and led the division for the longest time.
“It’s fitting reward for the players — once again they were magnificent. We’ve consistently been the best team. I’m delighted the players can call themselves champions and we leave here on a real high and it’s fully justified.” — Reuters
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