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New player-coach role for Purches

Posted: Mon 01 Jul 2013
Author: afcb.co.uk

Stephen Purches has joined Eddie Howe’s backroom team after taking up a player-coach role at the club.

Purches will divide his time between coaching the development squad and being part of the first team squad this season.

The long-serving full-back gained valuable experience towards the end of last season while coaching the Cherries’ young pros and was in the dug-out for the Hampshire Senior Cup final at the Goldsands Stadium.

Purches is looking forward to continuing the role while working towards a playing return in his testimonial match against West Ham United next week.

“It’s a big thing to have the opportunity to work with the gaffer and the coaching staff here and to try and develop some of the lads who are coming through,” he told afcb.co.uk.

“It’s been hard work combining the two roles, but it allows me to develop as a coach and learn from the great people we’ve got here.

“I’ve missed playing and coaching is the closest thing to it. It’s been a good thing to do and has helped me find my feet in terms of playing again and coaching.

“Having Chris Hargreaves here too means that we can mix it up between us and I can train when I need to, so it has worked out well. 

“I’ve really enjoyed the first week or so of pre-season and I’m just looking forward to the future now.” 

Howe is confident the latest addition to his coaching staff will be a success in his new role and believes Purches will prove to be a positive influence on the club’s young players.

“I think it will be a tough year for him because it’s always difficult to make that transition from player to coach but he’s already done that in my eyes,” he said.

“He’s very enthusiastic about the role and got some experience working with the development squad towards the end of last season.

“He did very well and I watched several of his sessions, which I thought were excellent. I think with time and through experience he will develop to become a top class coach.

“I trust him and know that he would do anything that he wanted to do to the best of his ability, and I think the players are lucky to have someone like him who is determined to get the best out of them.”