AFC Bournemouth: Simon Francis eyes automatic promotion

Bournemouth defender Simon Francis says there is no reason why the club cannot win automatic promotion this season.

League One Cherries have gone 16 games unbeaten in all competitions and lie seventh - five points off second place.

"The run is going to end at some point but as far as we are concerned it isn't going to be any time soon," Francis told BBC Radio Solent.

"If we continue that mentality then there is no reason why we won't be in the top-two soon."

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Wigan gives us a chance to test ourselves against Premier League opposition and we will go there full of confidence

Simon Francis

Francis, 27, added: "It's what's driving us on - the unbeaten run. We are 16 games unbeaten and we don't want to lose games and we don't want the run to end."

The Cherries travel to Premier League Wigan on Saturday for their first appearance in the FA Cup third round for seven years.

But the former Charlton defender says in some ways he would rather have a league game this weekend than a Cup tie, and added he is relishing the visit of Swindon on 12 January.

"It's a bit of a catch 22," he said.

"The form we're in we would like another league game and they don't come much bigger than Swindon at home.

"It's a massive game for us and them. But Wigan gives us a chance to test ourselves against Premier League opposition and we will go there full of confidence and hopefully we can get the ball down and show them what we can do."