May 22 2013 Latest news:
Saturday, June 23, 2012
West Ham vice-chairman Karren Brady has refused to be drawn into mounting speculation the Hammers are closing in on Norwich City skipper Grant Holt.
Canaries’ chief executive David McNally used his personal Twitter account earlier this week to knock down reports City had accepted the Londoners’ latest offer for the club’s triple player-of-the-year.
Holt has been the subject of two previous bids from the Premier League new-boys after his surprise transfer request at the end of last season.
Fresh reports West Ham are now ready to meet City’s valuation led to claims of a £5.5m move for the 31-year-old – but Brady has reiterated her club will do their summer transfer business through the proper channels.
“It’s not appropriate to comment on other people’s players,” said Brady, when asked directly if Holt was on Sam Allardyce’s shopping list. “We prefer to do our business face to face with the chairmen of other clubs, and that’s what we’ll do.
“We hope to bring in a few more significant signings to improve our team and increase our chances of remaining in the Premier League and really ‘have a go’. Sam has made a very strategic plan. We have a comprehensive list of players we hope to bring in and we are working to do that.”
Evian’s £4m-rated striker Yannick Sagbo is the latest player linked with an Upton Park move, with Allardyce reportedly close to securing loan deals for Inter Milan’s Luc Castaignos and Juventus’ Eljero Elia following a trip to Italy last week.
Holt’s representative, Lee Payne, expects the striker’s future to be resolved when new Canaries’ boss Chris Hughton returns to work next week following a Florida break. Holt had also been touted with a potential reunion with Paul Lambert, but Norwich’s England keeper John Ruddy used his Twitter account to distance himself from reports he could make a Villa Park switch. Ruddy tweeted: “With regards to these rumours that everyone is tweeting me about I don’t know where they have come from, I have no desire to leave Norwich City.”
The Daily Record yesterday claimed Lambert was trailing Rangers’ Scottish international keeper Allan McGregor, who could potentially leave the ailing Ibrox club this summer.
City’s scheduled pre-season game at Celtic has been brought forward 24 hours to Tuesday, July 24 (KO 7.45pm) to avoid a clash with the Olympic football tournament taking place at Hampden Park.