Bournemouth have made some quite amazing comments about the move of Matt Ritchie to Newcastle.
Manager Eddie Howe says that the south coast club reluctantly had to let the winger go because they couldn’t compete financially with Newcastle United.
Quite astonishing when you take into account that Bournemouth are guaranteed almost £100m this coming season purely from the new TV deal, whilst Newcastle get the lower parachute payment.
It shows the power of Newcastle United and the financial strength the fans have helped give them down the years, with this season no exception as today it was revealed that over 35,000 season tickets have now been sold.
Of course, without a quick rebound back to the Premier League, finances would end up being far more of a problem – hence the reason for recruiting quality players such as Matt Ritchie, who believe in what Rafa Benitez is doing at St James Park.
Eddie Howe says that there was no way he wanted Matt Ritchie to leave, describing him as ‘an outstanding player’.
The winger better off financially at Newcastle but Matt Ritchie also saying he couldn’t turn down a ‘massive club’ like NUFC, where he sees ‘exciting times for Newcastle’ ahead.
Eddie Howe speaking to Talksport:
“We weren’t happy to let him go. Matt Ritchie is an outstanding player.
“But the reality is that we just couldn’t compete with Newcastle’s finances and Matty expressed a desire to leave.
“I will make it clear there was no ill feeling between us, just a lot of mutual respect – the fact that he’d done well for us and hopefully we have done well for him.
“We all wish him well in his new career at Newcastle.”
As for Matt Ritchie himself, he made clear that Newcastle’s relegation was never an obstacle to him wanting to move to Tyneside:
“I have been here before when my brother-in-law was at university so I knew Newcastle was a great city.
“Bournemouth will always hold a special place in my heart but it’s hard to turn it down when a massive club like this comes calling.
“These are exciting times for Newcastle, the fans and the players.
“It’s fantastic to be here. I didn’t see it as a step down or anything like that. If anything I think it could be a temporary thing.”