MIDFIELD star Alex Scott feels it is “only a matter of time” until Cherries are competing in European football.

Excitement and expectations around the club are rising following investment from owner Bill Foley and an impressive first campaign under head coach Andoni Iraola.

After a slow start, some eyes did look towards potential European qualification last season, Cherries eventually ending the campaign in 12th place on 48 points, the most they have ever achieved in the Premier League.

Asked if Cherries can take inspiration from the likes of Brighton & Hove Albion, who competed in the Europa League last season, Scott said: “Brighton have been like a breath of fresh air these past few years.

“Not too long ago they were in the Championship as well and to come through and they’ve invested very well in managers and young players.

“They’ve been brilliant and obviously in Europe is a big thing and something I don’t see this club being too far away from.

“We’ll push on, we’ll try and improve next season.

“We’ll keep going and if it doesn’t happen next season, I think it’s only a matter of time before this club gets into Europe, with everyone behind the club higher up putting everything into the club.

“With the manager we’ve got and the players we’ve got as well, I see no reason why we can’t be a part of that.”

The 20-year-old added: “I think the club will do everything they need to do in investing in the summer, getting the right players in.

“The manager as well, I’m sure he’ll bring in the right suited players for his system.

“Hopefully we can really kick on next season and cement ourselves as a top-half Premier League team.”

Scott, a £20million signing from Bristol City last summer, made 27 appearances in his first season at Cherries, in what was also his debut campaign in the top flight.

Asked who he learnt the most from playing against, the England under-21 international said: “Man City is always the toughest game.

“At their place I got injured just before half-time, but Rodri is always the best player that you come up against.

“There’s been different challenges. The Crystal Palace game here, I was playing as a number six and that was a challenge in itself.

“I’ve played so many different positions and trying to adjust to positions I’ve never played in my life.

“To do it in the Premier League where you know all the pressure is on and if you make a mistake, it’s almost game over.

“They’re challenges that I’m going to learn from and I have learned from.

“I feel like I’ve come back a lot stronger from those mistakes.

“You’ve got to make mistakes as a player to grow and I understand that.

“There’s so many top teams in this league, where you’re learning every single week.”

Cherries start their 2024-25 Premier League campaign away at Nottingham Forest on Saturday, August 17 (3pm).