Will West Brom’s Shane Long join Nikica Jelavic at Hull before Norwich City trip?
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The Tigers of Hull City could have a freshly sharpened set of teeth for their Premier League clash with Norwich City on Saturday.
Shane Long goals
December 13, 2008: Shane Long scores once as Norwich City lose 2-0 at Reading.
April 27, 2009: Long scores both goals as Reading win 2-0 at Carrow Road.
November 13, 2010: The Irishman is on target for Reading again, in a 3-3 draw at the Madejski Stadium.
February 12, 2011: Long scores as Reading lose 2-1 at Norwich.
January 14, 2012: The striker was on target against City again, for West Brom this time, as the Canaries won 2-1 at The Hawthorns.
Hull have already secured the signing of Everton striker Nikica Jelavic and are hoping to sign another forward ahead of their visit to Carrow Road, one with a formidable scoring record against the Canaries, Shane Long.
Negotiations for Long’s transfer are reported to have already taken place at boardroom level, but no fee has yet been agreed.
It looked like Hull were going to complete an audacious double transfer swoop until the Long move was put on hold yesterday.
It is thought that new Baggies boss Pepe Mel has asked to assess his squad in training before making a decision on whether to let the Ireland international leave the Hawthorns.
Canaries supporters will be hoping that situation doesn’t change ahead of Saturday’s match, as Long has a record of six goals in 11 games against Norwich, although hasn’t scored in his last four matches against the Canaries.
The 26-year-old’s contract at West Brom runs out this summer.
Whether Long signs or not, Croatia international Jelavic looks set to go straight into battle with the Canaries after the final details of his £6.5m switch to the KC Stadium were sorted out yesterday.
The 28-year-old former Rangers man is thought to have moved for £5.5m, with Everton due another £1m if Hull manage to avoid relegation this season.
Jelavic insists a move to Hull suits him after talking over the transfer with Tigers manager Steve Bruce.
Everton boss Roberto Martinez has allowed Jelavic to leave to help his World Cup fortunes as the striker has been reduced to a bit-part player at Goodison Park after the loan signing of Romelu Lukaku.
“Steve Bruce called me and told me that he wants me in his team as a leading attacker,” Jelavic told Croatian newspaper Jutarnji list.
“He asked me if I’m ready to move, then talked briefly about the club, his coaching philosophy and about the club’s goals.
“He was very confident during that conversation and after that I agreed to move to Hull City.
“The club suits me and I’m happy that the clubs have found an agreement for my transfer.”
It is expected that Hull and West Brom will agree a similar £6m fee for Long, although it remains to be seen if the Irishman will agree terms with the Tigers.
Long played the full 90 minutes for the Baggies in their 1-0 defeat at Southampton on Saturday but has only found the back of the net four times so far this season.
His time at Albion looked to be up in September when the club agreed a deal with Hull, only for the transfer-deadline day move to collapse.
After the Southampton match Long was keen to play down any talk of a January departure.
“All I know is that there are plenty of rumours,” Long said.
“But no one has said anything to me and unless something happens in the next couple of weeks I am just concentrating on giving everything to West Brom.”