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Cherries: Howe's team building task
Published : 06 May 2010 07:00:00
Cherries boss Eddie Howe admits he will relish the opportunity to again test himself in the transfer market once he has finalised his retained list. Howe was restricted to just three emergency loans this season before Cherries' long-standing embargo was loosened after the deadline had passed in March. And since taking up his first managerial post at Dean Court some 16 months ago, his dealings involving permanent signings have been limited to four. His track record, however, is impressive with Liam Feeney, Anton Robinson, Steve Fletcher and Mark Molesley and loan star Rhoys Wiggins all pivotal to Cherries' success. And but for Cherries' transfer ban, Howe would have signed Poole Town striker Charlie Austin, who subsequently joined Swindon and is now rated at £2m. However, before Howe contemplates a summer of possible wheeling and dealing, a more pressing concern will be to decide the fate of a number of current players. And with no fewer than 10 members of the first-team squad out of contract, it could be an interesting close season for Cherries supporters. Howe told the Daily Echo: Being able to bring in players is something I need to do because every club has to evolve and progress. You can't stand still in football. We want to move forward and to get better. I want to make the team better and I want to try to make us competitive in League One. I have been pleased with the lads we have brought in, both permanently and on loan. They have all been excellent, as have all the players. It is a difficult task to identify players who are going to be good enough to mix into this team because we have got such good players already. It won't be an easy job but, hopefully, it will be one we can do. We have always kept an eye on what is about so we won't be coming in from the cold. We have a good idea of who is available and who isn't so, hopefully, we can choose wisely. Seven of Howe's existing squad Fletcher, Shaun Cooper, Alan Connell, Jeff Goulding, Scottie Guyett, Sammy Igoe and Josh McQuoid are waiting to discover whether they will be offered fresh terms. The remaining three Warren Cummings, Lee Bradbury and Danny Hollands have all triggered appearance-related clauses in their existing deals and would be entitled to extensions should they opt to stay. Discussing the forthcoming round of negotiations, Howe said: It is a difficult process but one that I am well aware is my duty as manager to do. It is part of the job, you always have to make difficult decisions. It is the job I am in so I am fully prepared to make those decisions. Former Millwall trainee Lyle Taylor has this week been training with Cherries. The 20-year-old striker hit 23 league goals this season to help Concord Rangers clinch promotion from Ryman Division One North.