FROM rags to riches, from bust to boom.

From Dean Court to Wem-ber-lee, they have kept the red flag flying high.

It is 10 years since Gerald Krasner was officially unveiled as the man tasked with trying to save financially-stricken AFC Bournemouth from going to the wall.

At 3.30pm on Thursday, February 7, 2008, the club finally succumbed to its mountain of debt when it was placed in the hands of administrators.

Notice of appointment was filed with the High Court in Leeds with business recovery experts Begbies Traynor nominated to sort out the mess.

The move came following days of turmoil which had seen HM Revenue and Customs serve a winding-up petition on the club and five members of staff made redundant.

HMRC’s aggressive stance was thought to have forced owner Jeff Mostyn’s hand after months of negotiations with potential investors had failed to bear fruit.

A 10-point deduction plunged Cherries to the foot of League One on the eve of their visit to Luton in what was dubbed the ‘debt derby’ with the Hatters having suffered a similar fate in November 2007.

Krasner rode into town to address the waiting media and immediately put the club up for sale, with a reserve of £3m, the price Cherries paid to Liverpool for Brad Smith 18 months ago.

He said the club was “millions” in debt and urged any interested parties to “get out your cheque books and back the club of your town”.

Financial crises were nothing new to Cherries with the club have gone into receivership at the start of 1997 when current boss Eddie Howe was just 10 appearances into his playing career.

Having retired at 29 due to a persistent knee injury, Howe had just been handed his first coaching post by Kevin Bond when news broke of Cherries’ latest disaster.

Speaking to the Daily Echo after guiding Cherries to ninth place in the Premier League following Saturday’s win over Stoke, Howe recalled: “I remember it being a case of ‘here we go again’.

“It wasn’t a new experience for the club. The feeling of being in financial turmoil, not getting paid on time and of potentially going bust had been around all through my playing career and into the coaching side.

“But there was incredible sadness that the club was in trouble again. On the playing front, we were going to lose points, we weren’t in a great position in the league and it was a bleak time.

“The worry for me at that stage was what the future held for the football club. If we couldn’t be sustainable and kept having financial problems, where did it all end so it was a very uncertain time.”

At the time, little did Howe know how crucial his role in mapping out the club’s future would be over the next 10 years.

Following months of intrigue and suspense, Cherries finally exited administration on the eve of the 2008-09 season. But there were still huge hurdles to overcome.

Having been bought by Sport-6 business partners Paul Baker and Alastair Saverimutto, who joined forces with Mostyn and Steve Sly, the club was offered an 11th-hour deal to stay in the Football League.

They had to accept a 17-point deduction for the new season and agree to pay around £500,000 to unsecured creditors.

Acceptance would see Cherries’ Football League share transferred to the new company and also lead to the club finally exiting administration. It was a formality.

Mostyn subsequently stepped down as chairman but returned after a consortium headed by Dorset-based businessman Adam Murry had acquired the club in June 2009.

Without Mostyn, who personally funded the club through administration, things could have been very different for Cherries, a point not lost on Howe.

“When you look at people who have played key roles in the club being where it is now, Jeff is right at the very forefront,” said Howe.

“He stood strong when the club needed it. It is very easy when the club is doing well to suddenly not look back and see and appreciate what people did during those difficult times.

“He had to put in his own money, money he didn’t really have, to keep the club afloat when he didn’t have any idea when or if it would ever come back to him.

“He did it for the people of Bournemouth. He kept the club going for everyone who lived and breathed it and needed it to survive for their own happiness. He deserves a huge amount of credit.

"If anyone had said to me back then what would happen, I would have laughed because there was no way I thought this club could ever be in the Premier League, ever.

"There was no way I thought we could even be sustainable in the Championship.

"You dream, you hope and think what if?

"But never to this level and for me to have had the privilege of being on the journey all the way through, I consider myself very fortunate."


24 NOVEMBER 2007

Cherries chairman Jeff Mostyn reveals at a fans’ forum that putting the club into administration is an option he has considered.


Mostyn reveals the board is in talks with potential investors and also moves to reassure fans after rumours suggest the club may be about to fall into administration.


Boss Kevin Bond insists Cherries’ lowly league position would not scare off potential investors after the team crashes to the foot of League One following defeat at Tranmere.

15 DECEMBER 2007

Mostyn and co-owner Steve Sly claim to have held talks with four potential investors.

24 DECEMBER 2007

Chief executive Laurence Jones sends out an emotional plea to the people of Bournemouth to help keep the troubled club alive by turning out in force for the match against Orient on Boxing Day.

3 JANUARY 2008

Former chairman Peter Phillips urges supporters to be “patient” with Mostyn and Sly as they bid to put the club back on a firm financial footing.

7 JANUARY 2008

Cherries file their first notice of intent to appoint an administrator. This gives them a period of protection from their creditors.

17 JANUARY 2008

The Echo believes Mostyn could be set to join forces with a fresh consortium of potential investors to embark on a highly-controversial pre-pack deal.

18 JANUARY 2008

Wimborne-based music promoter Mel Bush pours cold water on rumours he could be considering a bid for Cherries, should the club fall into the hands of the administrator.

21 JANUARY 2008

Cherries file a further notice of intent to appoint an administrator.

22 JANUARY 2008

Former chairman Phillips scotches suggestions he could be set to return to Dean Court as one of the club’s owners. Phillips is rumoured to be part of a possible consortium with Mostyn and Sly and maybe even Kevin and John Bond.

22 JANUARY 2008

Cherries are hit by a Football League transfer embargo, blocking Bond from adding to his threadbare squad due to the club’s perilous financial position.

25 JANUARY 2008

Chief executive Laurence Jones leaves the club to take up a new job as interim chief executive at the Leicester and Rutland County FA.

30 JANUARY 2008

Cherries receive a £200,000 bid for star striker Sam Vokes from Crewe Alexandra.


Mostyn uses his programme notes for the Nottingham Forest game to attempt to explain his reasons for keeping details of talks with potential investors under wraps. He says there has been no “veil of silence”.


The Daily Echo reports that Mostyn is believed to have held talks with one consortium headed by former Luton Town director John Mitchell. Cherries lodge a further notice of intent to appoint an administrator.


The Echo reports that the club is issued with a winding-up petition by HM Revenue and Customs. Mostyn says in a statement: “We are extremely disappointed at the stance taken by the Revenue in issuing the petition without any consultation or negotiation to reach a reduced settlement.”

Meanwhile, five members of Cherries staff are made redundant with immediate effect.


It emerges that the winding-up petition is likely to be set aside after the club successfully lodged a further notice of intent to appoint an administrator.


The Echo exclusively reveals the club has been placed in the hands of administrators.