As the Premier League moves into a month-long holding pattern because of the World Cup, it feels like Bournemouth have been in a holding pattern of their own for a while.
Bill Foley’s takeover was agreed and signed last month, with the paperwork submitted to the Premier League. Although no problems are anticipated, matters cannot move forward until the league has rubber-stamped the deal.
The first item in Foley’s in-tray will be the appointment of a permanent manager (or “head coach”, as the last couple of appointments have been called).
Reports emerged at the end of last week that ex-Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa was on the shortlist and had held talks – while Saturday’s emphatic 3-0 win over Everton prompted a round of counter-speculation that caretaker Gary O’Neil was still in contention to land the position full-time.
Foley has also talked of investing in the club’s infrastructure. Work is continuing on the new training ground at Canford Magna, while there is a decision to be made over the stadium. Buying back Vitality Stadium and then expanding it is an option – but perhaps more likely would be to find a new site to start from scratch.
Another pressing issue will be that of contracts. While Dominic Solanke, Chris Mepham, Adam Smith, Lewis Cook, Mark Travers and David Brooks all penned new deals as summer turned to autumn, there are others – notably Jefferson Lerma, Jaidon Anthony and Jordan Zemura – who are not contracted beyond summer 2023.
In the meantime, the World Cup looms - and with Philip Billing surprisingly overlooked for Denmark’s final squad, Cherries fans will just have Wales duo of Mepham and Kieffer Moore to cheer on.