AFC Bournemouth have made their best-ever Premier League start, supported by Bournemouth University as Higher Education Partner for a sixth year.
Bournemouth University (BU) will continue to support the club for another year, maintaining long established links which began while the club competed in League 1.
BU’s continued partnership with the club will also be supporting the development of girls’ football in Dorset as the main partner of the under-10, under-12, under-14 and under-16 AFC Bournemouth girls’ teams.
BU will also remain a Junior Cherries partner for the season and members of this popular club for younger fans will be invited to attend special events at the university with an educational aspect.
The BU men’s and ladies’ teams will continue to benefit from professional coaching from the AFC Bournemouth Community Sports Trust, while students will again have the chance to be matchday ambassadors, with journalism students having the chance to work with the media department at the club.
BU academics from across the Faculty of Health and Social Science have also been working with the club's coaching and physio team, with BU’s Dr Osman Ahmed collaborating with striker Jermain Defoe on an academic study. Dr Ahmed’s work with head of sports medicine, Dr Craig Roberts, and head physiotherapist, Steve Hard, was presented at the Isokinetic Conference in Barcelona in June.
BU’s Orthopaedic Research Institute has also been working with the club's Community Sports Trust, and professor Tim Rees has been working with the club's head of sport science in developing a project around player load and injury.
Commenting on the new agreement, Jim Andrews, BU’s chief operating officer, said: “Bournemouth University have been partnering with AFC Bournemouth for a number of years now, and we’re so proud of what the partnership has brought about; from opportunities for staff and students, to academic collaborations and community outreach, we’ve been working together to the benefit of both organisations, and Bournemouth as a whole.
He added: “We’re also incredibly proud to see our local football team continue their Premier League journey, and we’ll be supporting them all the way as the season progresses.”
Rob Mitchell, AFC Bournemouth commercial director, said: “We are delighted to extend our partnership with Bournemouth University for the new season and academic year.
“Our close relationship offers Bournemouth University students the opportunity to support the club in a number of important projects and schemes, as well as providing internships and work placements across a range of departments.
“In addition, the university’s continued support for girls’ football and the Junior Cherries will bring mutual benefits and raise awareness of educational opportunities for future generations.”