By Laurie Fitzgerald

AFC Bournemouth broke their club transfer record this week when they paid Crawley Town £800,000 for prolific striker Matt Tubbs.

It was a move that signalled the next big step in Tubbs career, which has come a long way in such a short space of time after plying his trade at non-league Salisbury Town only 18 months ago. 

The 27 year-old has had a stunning rise in the past couple of years since moving to Crawley back in the summer of 2010.

Tubbs scored 40 goals in all competitions last season to help the Red Devils gain promotion to the Football League for the first time in their history.

If there was any doubt that he could make the step-up to League football, Tubbs has quickly allayed those fears with his performances in League Two this campaign.  

His 18 goals have helped fire Crawley into the automatic promotion spots, as well as recently scoring the winner in their famous FA Cup win at Championship outfit Hull City.

So it’s no surprise that Bournemouth manager Lee Bradbury have splashed out such a significant sum of money on one of the top goalscorers in English football.

However, the big test now for Tubbs is proving that he can take the next step up to the third tier and help maintain the Cherries’ push for the play-offs.

Bradbury has carried building on the foundations laid by former boss Eddie Howe as he tries to bring Championship football to Seward Stadium.

Bournemouth are currently in ninth position, five points off of the top six having lost just one of their last seven league matches.

Money has been made available by Eddie Mitchell and Maxim Demin as the board back Bradbury to break into the play-off places, with the club also signing Huddersfield winger Donal McDermott on a three-and-a-half year deal.

Goals have been a problem for Bournemouth this season, with no other side in the top half of the table scoring fewer goals than the South Coast side.

So a lot of emphasis will be placed on Tubbs to hit the ground running and help fire Bournemouth into promotion contention.

After the couple of seasons that he’s had, few would bet against Tubbs continuing his remarkable rise up the English football ladder.

So what do you think? Will Tubbs make the step-up to League One? Leave a comment and let us know your views.

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