ANDONI Iraola is keeping an eye on the Championship promotion race, as four Cherries loanees continue their “big fight” to secure their teams a spot in the Premier League.

With less than a month to go in the season, just five points separate the top four clubs in the Championship.

Cherries have players out on loan at three of those. Striker Kieffer Moore is leading the line for table-topping Ipswich Town, Jaidon Anthony is at third-placed Leeds United and midfield pair David Brooks and Joe Rothwell are competing with automatic promotion outsiders Southampton.

The final weekend of the regular season sees Leeds host Southampton, in what could be a blockbuster clash at Elland Road in the battle for a promotion spot.

Russell Martin’s Saints also face a trip to second-placed Leicester, while Anthony could face some old Cherries teammates in Asmir Begovic and Steve Cook, when Leeds go to QPR.

Asked how much he has been keeping an eye on his players in the second tier, Iraola said: “The international break was the moment you can use more. Not only the games they are going to play, but to review some of the plays of the games you normally don’t have the time to because you are playing or travelling or whatever.

“You have a chance, with the other staff, to spend some time watching some of their tape.

“I also think especially Kieff, Jaidon, Brooksy and Joe have a big fight for this promotion. There are going to be good games.”

Bournemouth Echo:

Under Iraola, Cherries have faced four Championship clubs in cup competitions, beating Swansea City, Stoke City and QPR, before losing to Leicester.

Asked how much he has seen of the Championship since moving to England, Iraola said: “The problem is, when you are playing in the Premier League, there are always Premier League games to see.

“Sometimes Rayo Vallecano or Athletic, they call me from Spain and ask if I have seen this club or this club.

“I say I have enough with all the Premier League games to start watching!

“Especially with the players we have on loan, sometimes if I can see Jaidon Anthony playing for Leeds, or I can see Southampton because of Brooksy and Joe Rothwell, especially the ones with the players we have involved, I try to see them.

“But normally you don’t have a lot of chances to see other divisions.”

Earlier in his career, Iraola spent time managing in La Liga 2. Asked how different he feels the quality is among the second tiers in the two respective countries, Iraola said: “I have coached second division teams in Spain in Mirandes and Rayo Vallecano.

“It is very difficult to compare. The way the football is played is a little bit different.”