STAR defender Steve Cook has praised Cherries' hierarchy for slamming shut the Dean Court exits - a full nine days before the transfer window closes.

The 23-year-old centre-half insists the Dorset club's content squad are glad to be away from the annual rat race which reaches its climax on September 1. 

Cook signed a fresh three-year contract in July on the back of reported interest from Premier League Crystal Palace and newly-promoted Championship rivals Wolves. 

Sought-after colleague Simon Francis last week followed suit having been the subject of overtures from beaten play-off finalists Derby County, with Lewis Grabban - who had a release trigger in his contract - the only big name to leave since last season.

And with Cherries swift to quash any summer speculation, Cook believes performances can only benefit from the players knowing exactly where they stand.

Cook told the Daily Echo: “The transfer window hots up towards the end and it is always an interesting watch but I don't think anyone here will be participating.

“No one has really spoken about it to be honest. We don't pay a lot of attention to it and it's not a big deal because everyone is happy here and the club is going places.

“It's always nice to know the club won't be selling its best players. If you came in to the news that three or four lads had moved to another club in the Championship you would wonder what was going on.

“You hear about clubs making broken promises but that has never happened here. When there has been interest in players, the club has been quick to put a stop it.

“It's a hard situation if you're not certain whether you'll be staying or leaving, it can mess up your head. All you want to do is concentrate on football rather than where you're going to be and we look so settled at the moment because nobody wants to leave.

“Maybe a few years ago, we might have seen a few of the lads go but now the club has grown, we have got in some good players and have held onto most of our top performers.

“There is a project here and the last thing you want to see is players leaving so credit to the club, the manager and the owner because they have a vision of where they want us to be and that ambition is definitely filtering through to the lads.

“We all buy into the way the manager wants to do things and want to reach the highest level with Bournemouth and I think that's definitely possible, if not this season then the next.

“I think we have a good, settled squad and that's what you need so hopefully we'll keep churning out good performances.”