Eddie Howe admits he is scouring the lower leagues in a bid to unearth the next Dele Alli.
“We certainly do look in the lower leagues for players,” he told the Bournemouth Echo. “We would never cut off that market. I wouldn’t ever want to do that, because I know there are players who can make the step up.
“You have to remember, half of our team – maybe more than half of our team – have come from League One and the Championship. Dele Alli has proved it can still be done, coming from the lower leagues and working your way up.
“Sometimes, when a player makes that jump it can be a long time before you see him progress in the manner that Dele has – it is a credit to him that he has had the mental strength to believe he belongs at this level, and to then distinguish himself at the level.
“We did look at him but he had gone beyond us quite quickly. We were in the Championship at the time – and we talked about him when I was at Burnley as well.
“There are players we are looking at now – I wouldn’t give you names but we haven’t closed that market off to us.”