Simon Francis excited by Bournemouth move

Simon Francis
Simon Francis played with Bournemouth boss Lee Bradbury at Southend

New signing Simon Francis has spoken of his excitement at joining Bournemouth following his loan move from Charlton this week.

Francis, 26, will join the Cherries permanently in January and is set to make his debut in Saturday's FA Cup first-round game against Gillingham.

The defender was set to join the club in July but the move fell through.

"I'm really excited as this is a chance for me to get my career back on track," Francis told BBC Radio Solent.

"The last few months have been hard and I was delighted to get the call from the gaffer [Lee Bradbury]. I was told I wasn't going to be involved at Charlton and I can only thank Lee for coming back in for me."

The former Bradford, Sheffield United, Grimsby and Tranmere player was a team-mate of Bradbury at Southend when the club won promotion from League One to the Championship in 2006.

"I got on really well with Lee, he was one of my best friends at Southend, and it is great to see him doing well in management," added Francis.

The defender is convinced Bournemouth have a bright future with the Cherries this week confirming Russian businessman Maxim Demin as their new owner.

He also refused to rule out a charge for the play-offs this season.

"It is great here, I had no hesitation when Lee picked up the phone because this club is only going forward," he said.

"The new owner can only spark good things for this club and I hear they are trying to buy back the ground which will be great. I hear there are plans for a new training ground by Dean Court."

He added: "To be in the Championship in a couple of years would be great and to be a part of that would be fantastic.

"We need to go on a run if we are going to make the play-offs. This league is so open and there will be a lot of games where we will shock a few times.

"I'm really excited as this is a chance for me to get my career back on track. The last few months have been hard and I was delighted to get the call for the gaffer."

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