Deals, Leavers and Gossip!-Weekly Update
There was quite a bit of news and gossip in the 'Rumour Mill last week regarding possible players coming into the club. We continue to be linked with an interest in Portsmouth utility player Joel Ward but face stiff competition from Championship rivals, Leeds United, Crystal Palace and Ipswich Town. It is believed a bid of £400-500k could be enough to secure the 22 year old`s services but it looks like Leeds remain in the driving seat to sign him and they were thought to have met with Ward last week.
Portsmouth administrator Trevor Birch though said:
"Joel Ward will be the next to go but I am not certain of the timescale on that.
"That is progressing. I would have thought something should be happening in the next few days.
"He is not necessarily going to be Leeds. He has met a few other clubs in total and has been talking things over with them.
"We are waiting to see what the outcome will be."
Another player we have been linked with is Leeds midfielder Andy Clayton (pictured above). The 23 year old former Manchester City player was transfer-listed by Neil Warnock at the end of the 2011-12 season. Clayton still had 12 months remaining on his existing deal but talks to negotiate a new deal broke down.
The irony for Burnley is that if Clayton does leave as expected then Leeds could hot up their intention to sign Ward so both targets could evaporate!
Leeds boss Neil Warnock said:
"I have to look at it and say I`ll be signing a player for £400,000 or £500,000 and I don`t feel Adam`s worth more than the player I`ll be signing.
"With what I`m looking for, I`ve got to generate something to get me what I want. That`s how I looked at it and I`m trying to be a realist.
"I`m sure there`ll be a number of clubs after Adam because he`s done well this season in a lot of games."
The locally-born Mancunian joined Manchester City at the age of seven years old and signed his first professional contract at the beginning of the 2008-09 season. In May 2009 he signed a two year contract extension. Loan spells at Carlisle and Leeds followed in 2010.
At the end of his one month loan at Leeds in August 2010, Clayton signed for the club permanently for an undisclosed fee and then also gained experience out on loan to first Peterborough and then MK Dons. He established himself as a first choice midfielder last season and has now made over 40 appearances for the Yorkshire side as well as scoring six goals including Leeds` goal of the season at Leicester back in November.
So that`s the potential ins, what about the outs?
Well we now know for certain that the expected departures of central defenders, Clarke Carlisle and Andre Amougou will definitely go ahead. Both players were officially released by the club this week and the two defenders now join Brian Easton looking for a new career move.
Speculation as you might expect continues regarding the potential transfer of Jay Rodriguez with Premier League clubs galore linked with a move. One club that we can now probably say will definitely be out of the running is Bolton following their relegation to the Championship. Fulham though would appear to be in the driving seat to sign him or at least seem to be the most determined to do so. Fulham gaffer, Martin Jol has Jay Rod high on his list of targets and it has been reported that Burnley have already turned down a £5million offer! Fulham are now expected to come in with an improved bid although it is doubtful they will meet Burnley`s £8 million evaluation of the player.
Even if we can fight off Fulham`s attempts to sign 'one of our own` Reading, Newcastle, Norwich, Everton and Premier League newcomers Reading and Southampton are also waiting in the wings to swoop if media reports are to be believed.
There was some good news coming out of Turf Moor last week after confirmation that some new deals have been offered and/or agreed. Brian Jensen is still pondering whether to accept the new offer he has been given but third-string goalkeeper,Jon Stewart has also been offered a new deal. Scottish Under 21 International, Alex MacDonald is another player considering a new deal offered by the club. Young strikers Joe Jackson and Shay McCartan who are both close to breaking into the first team have also both been offered new contracts.
The club also took up second-year options on the contracts of both Chris McCann and Zavon Hines. Both signed one year deals last summer.