CHERRIES will release a documentary next week, marking the club’s ‘Greatest Escape’ from League Two relegation a decade ago.

Submerged in debt and docked 17 points for financial reasons, Cherries were marooned at the bottom of the Football League and their very existence was on the line.

Players and staff were not getting paid and the bailiffs were regular visitors to Dean Court as the club was unable to pay the bills. Ex-Northern Ireland international Jimmy Quinn had just been sacked as manager and some fans had already given up hope as the club lurched from one crisis to another.

In a desperate last throw of the dice, the club turned to popular former player Eddie Howe, who was tasked with trying to pull off what had seemed a mission impossible. With no experience behind him, Howe took the reins on New Year’s Eve 2008 and, just a month after his 31st birthday, became the youngest manager in the country.

Appointed initially on a caretaker basis, eyebrows were raised in some quarters when Howe was given the job permanently following back-to-back defeats.

But despite being 10 points adrift of safety when he took over, the rookie boss went on to prove himself a miracle worker by famously plotting the club’s path to safety.

What became known as the ‘Greatest Escape’ has now been turned into documentary which the club is premiering at the town’s Odeon cinema on Wednesday April 24. Chronicling the events of a truly remarkable campaign, ‘Minus 17’ will also be made available to watch free of charge on afcbtv – the club’s online video channel.

The documentary will go live on afcbTV on Thursday April 25 – exactly 10 years to the day since AFC Bournemouth famously beat Grimsby to secure their place in the Football League against all the odds.

Boss Howe said: “I love talking about the individuals in that team. It makes me very proud because there were so many heroes.

“It’s important the club respect its history and players who come in understand what the club has been through.

“There’s a balance because it is always about the future, the next game and the next season. But it’s very important we respect the ethics of that team which were hard work, character and the ability to bounce back from disappointments.

“We have tried to keep those as hallmarks of our teams ever since.”

Discussing his decision to take the job in 2008, Howe added: “I asked myself whether it was something I wanted to take on because the challenge was so big.

“I was aware my management career could have been over before it had even started if it hadn’t have gone well.

“If we hadn’t been successful, the risks were so great and, ultimately, it was a huge call for me to make but one I just felt I couldn’t turn down.

“I knew I might not get the chance again so I decided to grab it with both hands.

“The lads could have used all the financial restrictions and points deductions as an excuse or it could help unify and motivate them in ways they never knew possible. I certainly went for the latter and tried to instil that ‘us against the world’ type of mentality.”