Rumour Mill-Race for Pugh?
The rumours linking Burnley with a move for 24 year old Bournemouth winger, Marc Pugh continue at a pace with the Mirror the latest to suggest an interest from Eddie Howe. Howe of course was Pugh's former boss at Dean Court and knows the player well.
We would however now appear to face competition and could be in a race to sign him when the January window opens in the New Year.
According to the Mirror both Premier League, Fulham and current Championship leaders, Southampton have the versatile player on their radar.
Pugh, born locally in Bacup was on Burnley`s books as a youth player but was released in 2006 at the time that both Chris McCann and Jay Rodriguez made the step up to the professional ranks under former gaffer, Steve Cotterill. He also had two spells on loan at Kidderminster whilst at Turf Moor.
After leaving Turf Moor, he had spells at Bury, Shrewsbury Town, Luton (loan) and Hereford United before joining Bournemouth, newly promoted to League 1 in June 2010. He can play as an attacking midfielder, striker or winger and is often on the score-sheet scoring at a rate of about 1 goal every 3-4 games. He scored 13 goals last season for Bournemouth and already looks well on the way to beating that with nine goals so far this season,5 of them in League 1. He is already the Cherries leading goal-scorer this season.
Burnley were linked with Pugh previously after Howe`s appointment as Burnley gaffer but there did not seem to be much substance in the speculation although obviously Eddie Howe`s links with Bournemouth and his former player were bound to fuel the rumour in the media. Howe is clearly an admirer of Pugh and it remains to be seen if he can prise yet another Bournemouth player away from Dean Court following the signings of Marvin Bartley and Danny Ings. Third-string keeper, Jon Stewart was also on Bournemouth`s books during Howe`s time there.
If it is true though that both Fulham and Southampton are interested in signing him then we are going to face some stiff opposition with both those clubs likely to be able to offer a better salary. Pugh though might feel more comfortable returning to his roots and play for a club he is familiar with under a boss he knows well and in the company of a few of his former Cherries team mates.