EPL

Bournemouth focused on Howe reunion as Golden Knights owner reportedly closes on takeover

By Sports Desk September 16, 2022

Bournemouth caretaker boss Gary O'Neil is focusing on on-field matters amid reports Vegas Golden Knights owner Bill Foley could complete a takeover of the Premier League club.

Foley has been credited with an interest in the Cherries as existing owner Maxim Demin attempts to sell the club, with a deal potentially set to be completed before the World Cup.

Bournemouth parted company with head coach Scott Parker just four games into the season last month, and takeover talks may mean O'Neil receives an extended audition for the top job.

However, speaking ahead of Saturday's trip to Newcastle United, O'Neil said: "Obviously, I'm not involved in any discussions like that. 

"I've been hard at work over on the other side, on the grass.

"Takeovers and discussions of that level are obviously a long way from my mind, and what I'm focused on at the moment, which is Newcastle. It's going to be a big test."

Saturday's game will be particularly notable for opposing coach Eddie Howe, who spent 11 years at Bournemouth across two spells, overseeing their initial rise from League Two to the Premier League, as well as representing the club as a player.

Howe used his own pre-match news conference to discuss the sense of occasion he feels ahead of the match at St James' Park.

"I personally feel a huge sense of gratitude to the club and everyone connected with it. I wouldn't be sat here now if it wasn't for AFC Bournemouth," the Newcastle coach said.

"We'll be competing to win the game and are desperate to do so, but it will be a special game for us."

Newcastle have suffered a number of injuries to key players in the season's early weeks, but Howe would not disclose information on the status of Bruno Guimaraes, Allan Saint-Maximin and Callum Wilson.

"Everyone has improved, but I'll leave my team news until the time we get it," he said. "It's been a slightly difficult period for us, but hopefully we're coming out of that. They are big players for us, and we need them back quickly."

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