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Monday, July 16, 2007

Les Ferdinand on How Nearly Became Bournemouth Manager

Les: I was close to taking Cherries job Bournemouth Daily Echo
By Steve Wilson

"Les Ferdinand has admitted that he was "very close" to accepting the job of Cherries boss last autumn after getting a brief glimpse of what he might be missing.
The former England striker led the line for Luther Blissett's Celebrity XI a full year after last stepping on to a football pitch.
But the ex-Premiership star was the top managerial target for former chairman Abdul Jaffer last September when Sean O'Driscoll left Dean Court for Doncaster Rovers and was ultimately succeeded by Kevin Bond.
Asked how close he had come to becoming manager, Ferdinand told the Daily Echo: "It was very close.
"I had a good meeting with the chairman at the time but I just felt it wasn't quite the right move for me.
"I felt I had other avenues that I wanted to explore, although I'd had the interview and was offered the job.
"It was a couple of days later that I decided I couldn't accept it.
"I never regret decisions that I've made, but if things had worked out differently, I could have been sat in the dugout. After five minutes on the pitch, it seemed like the better place to be!
"But I enjoyed it. It's a great little stadium they've got here so hopefully they'll have raised a few bob out of it."
Although the club denied that Ferdinand had been offered the post back in September, the 40-year-old Londoner insists that he is working hard on gaining the necessary qualifications to make sure he is ready for the challenge of management in due course.
He said: "Great opportunities like that can come around, but sometimes you need to take a step back.
"People can snap things up a bit too quickly when they haven't done their ground work and I didn't want to make that same mistake.
"Some people will say that you learn better by going in there and doing it.
"But I felt I wanted to prepare myself properly because management is a very difficult job. If I fail, it will not be for a lack of preparation.
"I've just passed the LMA course in Warwick and if you've played at a high level, I think you have a four or five year window when you come out of football before people start forgetting who you are." Bournemouth Echo

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