Heading into the final day of the January transfer window it was clear that AFC Bournemouth needed to line up a potential signing in attack to mitigate the likely departure of Joshua King.
King was heavily linked to both Fulham and Everton and with a deal going down to the final few hours, AFC Bournemouth had a loan signing with Southampton agreed for Shane Long.
All the dominos needed to be aligned however and Southampton were also keen to sign a replacement for Long, which turned out to be a loan deal for Takumi Minamino from Liverpool.
Once King agreed his deal with Everton and Minamino joined Southampton, Shane Long was free to join the Cherries on a loan deal until the end of the 2020/21 season.
The 34-year-old Republic of Ireland international’s move is still subject to EFL approval, confirmation of his availability to face Sheffield Wednesday this (Tuesday) evening is yet to be confirmed.
Long moved over to England from the Republic of Ireland in 2005 when he joined Reading, he went on to score 52 goals for them before a move to West Brom in 2011 for a reported £6.5million.
He scored 22 times for West Brom, before a £7million move to Hull City in January 2014. Just six months and 4 goals later he was on the move again, this time for £12million and a move to Southampton.
Over the past six and a half years, Long has made 226 appearances for Southampton, including 92 Premier League starts. He has scored 35 goals in all competitions.
AFC Bournemouth manager Jason Tindall told afcb.co.uk…
“I am delighted to bring an attacker of Shane’s experience and quality to the club,”
“As well as his undoubted technical ability, Shane’s character, maturity and leadership skills are something we have been searching for to add to what is a relatively young squad.
“He has played at the highest level for the majority of his career – including the past nine seasons – and we are hoping to bring the best out of him over the coming months as we aim to gain promotion back to the Premier League.”
Can’t believe all the negativity on here to someone we’ve just signed and who is, therefore, an AFCB player. Like all signings, he’ll have my 100% support until he gives me a reason not to. By and large, the only reason not to is that the player has stopped trying, and I can’t see that being an issue here.
Long is not a direct replacement for King, so his goal tally is irrelevant. We’re getting, as JT says, confidence, maturity and leadership, as well as footballing intelligence and a willingness to work hard for team and teammates.
I would say that’s exactly what we need at the moment.
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