Afobe was sent back on loan to former club Wolves in January for the remainder of the season, having managed just 10 goals in 46 top-flight outings for the Cherries.
The 25-year-old has started to find his feet in the second tier once again by scoring four goals in his last four outings, and Butland - who won the European Under-17 Championship title with Afobe - is expecting Bournemouth's loss to be Wanderers' gain.
"I had Benik in the squad in 2010 and he has gone onto some great things," he is quoted as saying by the Express & Star. "He did not get the game time he would have liked at Bournemouth. I thought he deserved more and he played well but now he is back at Wolves he has rediscovered the form he had first time round so it is great to see him doing the business.
"He is a great player and will score lots of goals. He has struggled with injuries and that has held him back but now he is hitting the heights that we all know he is capable of. At Bournemouth it was tough and maybe he got crowded out because there was big competition for places but he has stuck at it and worked hard.
"When he was in the Under-17s, we feared him. He was on the books at Arsenal and whenever we played them, he was the one we looked out for and feared. He was that good. He was an extreme talent and made a big difference in the U17s finals. He has been very successful since then."
Afobe admitted earlier this week that he would love to stay on at Wolves should they earn promotion to the top flight.