CHERRIES have hired Gary O'Neil as a new senior first-team coach.

Former Portsmouth, West Ham and Norwich midfielder O'Neil played alongside Cherries' new boss Jonathan Woodgate at Middlesbrough during the 2007-08 season.

Cherries had been a man light in the coaching department. Woodgate was hired at the start of this month to work under manager Jason Tindall, replacing the departing Graeme Jones.

However, two days later Tindall was sacked and Woodgate placed in interim charge. The 41-year-old then became the club's permanent head coach at the weekend and has now been allowed to bring in another member of staff to work underneath him.

O'Neil, 37, arrives armed with a UEFA Pro License and before getting the call from Cherries had previously been working as an under-23s assistant coach at Premier League champions Liverpool.

Speaking to Cherries' official website, Woodgate said: "I’ve known Gary for a number of years, having played with him at Middlesbrough.

"He comes highly recommended from Liverpool and has a great knowledge of the game and an appetite to never stop learning.

"Gary is going to bring something different to the coaching staff. He’s a new voice to the players, someone who has no connection to Bournemouth and I believe that an outside pair of eyes are important for us.

"I’m really looking forward to Gary joining our staff."