BENIK Afobe set his sights on rediscovering his shooting boots in the Premier League – amid speculation he could leave Cherries in the January transfer window.

Former Arsenal youngster Afobe has not found the net in a first-team game since April and The Sun has linked the DR Congo international with moves to West Brom and former club Wolves.

Aston Villa have also been touted as potential suitors for the striker, who scored a hat-trick as Carl Fletcher's youthful Cherries side earned a 3-2 Premier League Cup win over Norwich City on Wednesday – with Eddie Howe looking on.

Having been restricted to substitute appearances in the top flight since mid-August, Afobe is hoping to earn a recall to boss Howe's starting line-up when Cherries take on Tottenham at Wembley Stadium on Saturday.

And the frontman is keen to build on his Vitality Stadium treble and fire the Dorset club up the Premier League table.

Afobe said: "The Premier League Cup game wasn't about staking a claim, it was to get fitness. Scoring goals, you do stake a claim but I've always been one of those players who do their talking on the pitch.

"All I can do is keep scoring goals in training and take my chance when I play in games. I'm a goalscorer. I had three chances against Norwich and scored three, so it just goes to show that I can do it.

"Whether it's in training, for the reserves or the first team, when you go through one-on-one, it's still the goalkeeper you have to beat. I'm glad I've scored my goals but I want to put that into the first team now."

While the former Arsenal youngster recognises the need to open his first-team account for 2017-18, he is adamant the overall fortunes of his side are of far greater importance.

Cherries are currently 19th in the Premier League standings and a point from safety having won just one of their opening seven games.

Afobe added: "I didn't score my first goal until December last season so this season I'm hoping I can score before then.

"This time last year I was 'unused sub' so I'm doing better than that. I ended up having a strong end to the season, so it goes to show that what happens at the beginning of the season doesn't mean that's the end of it.

"Football has its ups and downs, you have got to be mentally tough and I think I have improved on that a lot.

"But at the moment, it's not about me scoring or the strikers scoring, it's just about winning and climbing the table. We've scored four league goals and we're better than that.

"It's been tough for all of us. We have fewer points than we had at this stage in the past two Premier League seasons. But everything changes. The main thing is for us to start winning games again."