City continue their pre-season with a trip to AFC Bournemouth on Tuesday. Thomas Phillips has the preview.
Bournemouth are currently playing their football in League One and finished eleventh in the division last term. This followed a heart-breaking penalty shoot-out defeat the season before in the play-off semi finals at the hands of Huddersfield Town.
The Cherries' home ground is Dean Court, but due to the naming rights recently being sold, it is now known as the Goldsands Stadium. The ground was first used in 1910 but was completely rebuilt in 2001, which included the pitch being rotated a full ninety degrees. The football club is located in the town of Bournemouth, which is a large coastal town in the county of Dorset. They start their season with a Capital One Cup tie against Oxford United and their first league tie is a mouth-watering tie against Portsmouth away.
Bournemouth have had some big names playing for them over the years with the likes of Jermaine Defoe, Harry Redknapp and even George Best. Best made five appearances for the Cherries towards the end of his career in 1983. After two spells for the club as a player, Redknapp went onto become manager from 1983-92 and cemented his place as a legend of the club. Other managers of the club include current Stoke manager Tony Pulis who managed the Cherries between 1992-94. Bournemouth have also had a Father and son manage their club in the shape John and Kevin Bond. Their spells with Bournemouth were between 1970-73 and 2006-08 respectively. This was not the only Father-son connection for Bournemouth with Jamie Redknapp making thirteen appearances during his father's reign, before making the move to Liverpool in 1991. Paul Groves is the current man in charge following the dismissal of former coach Lee Bradbury.
Harry as Cherries boss - April 1992
The last time Cardiff and Bournemouth met competitively was in a League cup clash back in the 2008/9 season at Dean Court. That game resulted in a 2-1 win for the Bluebirds. The first time these two sides met was back in 1931 and since then there have been forty fixtures in total. The Cherries have had the better record overall gaining sixteen wins compared with Cardiff's thirteen and eleven of the ties ending with a draw. However, City have had the better of their south coast opposition in recent years, unbeaten as they are in the last five meetings. Last July's pre-season clash between the two teams ended in a 2-1 win to the Cherries, Andrew Taylor scoring his first goal in Cardiff colours.
Many Cherries fans saw last season as a transition period for the club after the failed play-off attempts the season before. The exit of many key players and manager Eddie Howe to Burnley meant rebuilding was needed.
However, the squad with some old players and new summer additions still have some players to look out for. Steve Fletcher has made over seven hundred appearances and has scored more than a hundred goals since joining the club in 1992. At the age of forty he may not feature in every game, but when he is on the field he brings others into play with his strength and power.
The Cherries' have Joe Partington in midfield who has captained Wales from Under 16 level all the way through to Under 21s after rising through the ranks at Bournemouth. Marc Pugh joined the Cherries from Hereford in 2010 and was top-scorer from midfield last season.
A player many City fans may recognise is former Swansea City and Wales international Shaun MacDonald. He could prove to play a vital role from midfield for Bournemouth this season. Amongst the new signings is Eunan O'Kane. He made the 2011/12 League Two team of the season whilst playing for Torquay United and turned down the chance to play for Crawley Town to sign for Bournemouth. He is a creative midfield player and will push the likes of Shaun MacDonald for a starting position.
CLICK HERE - to listen to live and uninterrupted commentary of City v Bournemouth with Mark Denham and Barrie McAuliffe from 7.15pm Tuesday evening on Cardiff City Player