Bournemouth's injury-hit squad leaves Eddie Howe planning January recruitments
Eddie Howe has revealed he is already planning for the January transfer window in his attempts to strengthen Bournemouth's injury-hit squad.
Owing to injury, the manager is already likely without Callum Wilson, Tyrone Mings and Max Gradel until the season's end - the latter two only arrived in the summer when, respectively for £8million and £7million, they became the club's most expensive ever players - meaning that much of his promising summer recruitment has already been undermined.
Bournemouth on Saturday travel to Manchester City, who presently lead the Premier League, and, after learning that club captain Tommy Elphick will miss at least the coming eight weeks following surgery on an ankle issue, Howe knows that further signings are required if they are to avoid relegation.
"I have no problem saying we are trying to prepare and plan for the January transfer window," said Howe, 37.
"But as we saw in the previous window, you can have the best laid plans in the world and that can be rocked within three days of the window shutting.
"We've got things in mind but there are so many twists and turns. We'll wait and see what happens."
City, who on Wednesday announced that last season they made a profit for the first time since Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed became their owner in 2008, are widely considered to possess the strongest squad in the Premier League.
Their summer arrivals included £49million Raheem Sterling and £55million Kevin de Bruyne, the second most expensive player in Premier League history, but while in his time at Bournemouth Howe has overseen a remarkable rise from near-financial ruin to the Premier League, he also said that he would spend similarly "obscene" amounts if he could and considers City's recruitment to be justified.
"You can look at transfer fees in isolation and think it's an obscene amount of money, but the reality is whatever fee is paid that is what the player is worth and the players deserve to earn the money that they get," he said.
"We know we are not going to be in a position to compete (financially) with them but we've never been in a position where we can compete, even in the Championship with some teams.
"I have no problem with the guys who spend money at the top end of the league. They're more than welcome to do as they see is right for their football club but we are in a different market.
"We've spent money on players here and as much as it's nice it's also a feeling you have got to try and make sure you get right, so I think they've done that.
"Would I like to spend £50million? Yeah, if we had it I'd probably spend it but then attracting a player for £50million is another matter."