CHERRIES boss Eddie Howe is urging his summer recruits to follow the lead of Ryan Fraser as they await their chance to shine on the big stage.
Fraser, a bargain £400,000 buy from Aberdeen in January 2013, has starred during his breakthrough season in the Premier League.
And the flying winger was this week rewarded for his eye-catching exploits with a first call-up to Gordon Strachan’s Scotland squad.
Since joining Cherries as an 18-year-old, Fraser has been forced to bide his time and was restricted to just six starts in two years before this season.
But after being handed his top-flight debut at West Ham in August, Wee Man’s stock has gone through the roof thanks to a series of dazzling displays.
And Howe hopes the likes of Lewis Cook, Emerson Hyndman and Lys Mousset – who have all been used sparingly in their first season at the club – can take a leaf out of the Scotsman’s book.
Howe told the Daily Echo: “We signed Ryan when we were in League One because we believed in his ability as a player.
“It was the same with Josh King who we signed just after we had been promoted to the Premier League.
“It is slightly relative to where we were when we recruited them because if you want a player in your second season in the Premier League, the fees gets multiplied by 10, 20 or whatever. There are players you have to pay big money for because that is the level we are competing at now.
“Other players can look at Ryan and use him as an inspiration. He had to be very patient and could easily have gone the other way and thought ‘I’m not waiting any longer’.
“I would have said that would have been a mistake but you can’t control a player’s feelings. Hopefully, he felt we were developing him behind the scenes so when he got his opportunity, he was ready to take it.
“Hopefully, those players we have recruited since will be the next Ryan Fraser in the future. They will be the ones who were really good purchases and cheap compared with prices now.
“We believe fees are inflated because of the level we are at. But they could prove to be very astute buys – maybe not now, but maybe in a year’s time.”
King has also proved to be a snip in today’s market, with the frontman’s £1million fee from Blackburn in the summer of 2015 determined by a transfer tribunal.
Howe added: “When I first started to work with Josh, I was aware he was a player who had everything you needed to be a top-level player.
“The only thing missing for him was the opportunity to do that and I have been very impressed with him.
“As always, the responsibility is with the player as to how much they will improve because it’s down to them to take everything on board and that is what Josh has done.”