Gary O'Neil shellshocked after 6am phone call to tell him he was sacked

 Gary O’Neil was left shellshocked by Bournemouth’s decision to sack him after he received a call at 6am relieving him of his duties despite keeping them up in the Premier League

Gary O'Neil shellshocked after 6am phone call to tell him he was sacked
📷 Gary O'Neil was left shellshocked following 6am sacking call (Image: AFC Bournemouth via Getty Images)

Gary O’Neil received a brutal phone call at 6am telling him he’d been sacked as Bournemouth manager.

The 40-year-old stepped into the Cherries’ hot seat in August after Scott Parker left following the 9-0 defeat against Liverpool - giving a crucifying rant on the state of the squad in the aftermath.

But O’Neil who joined on an original interim basis quickly became the permanent boss on the south coast following a string of positive results – steering the club to Premier League safety and finishing 15th.

The surprising decision to sack him was also a shock to O’Neil himself, who according to the Mirror had been studying clips of potential signings when he received the call from the board.

It’s claimed in the report that although he was handed the managerial job on a permanent basis last season, he only received that backing as the owner's first choice for the job was unavailable.

But now that unnamed manager is believed to be free to take the role.

O’Neil won ten of his 34 Premier League games as Bournemouth manager last year and defied expectations to keep the Cherries in the top flight in comfortable fashion in the end. But he ultimately wasn’t the man who Bournemouth wanted to plan their long-term project around.

Bournemouth chairman Bill Foley released a statement regarding O’Neil’s sacking, he said: "Gary's achievement last season is one I will always be grateful for.

“This has been a difficult decision, but it has been made with great consideration to best position ourselves ahead of the coming season.

"As a club, we have put plans in place for long-term success with improvements being made to infrastructure, most notably the development of a new state-of-the-art training facility and the ongoing discussions around upgrades to our stadium.

"We have also identified a number of significant targets in the transfer market this summer and believe this change in direction will provide us with the best platform from which to build.

"Gary will go on to have a long career as a head coach or manager, but we feel that, at this moment in time, a change is in the best interests of this football club.

“I would like to place on record my thanks to Gary and wish him all the best for the future."

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