Fulham ready to move for Bent

FULHAM are ready to exploit 'club in distress' Ipswich Town and snap up Marcus Bent.The Londoners are looking to sign the striker and play him for the remainder of the Premiership season.

FULHAM are ready to exploit 'club in distress' Ipswich Town and snap up Marcus Bent, writes Derek Davis.

The Londoners are looking to sign the striker and play him for the remainder of the Premiership season.

Cottagers boss Jean Tigana was among a number of top managers and scouts at Selhurst Park on Tuesday to see Bent head in the equaliser against his old club Crystal Palace and show he has recovered from a recent hamstring problem.

Charlton Athletic boss Alan Curbishley has been a regular at Ipswich Town games of late along with his assistant Mervyn Day with Hermann Hreidarsson and a Town midfielder believed to be of particular interest.


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I understand Portsmouth were also considering making a move for Hreidarsson who needed surgery to repair a deep gash just above his knee and is expected to be out for five weeks.

Although no bid had been tabled last night I understand Fulham may offer the Ipswich Town administrators Deloitte & Touche around £1.5m for the striker Town took from Blackburn Rovers for £3m.

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The Blues still owe Rovers a percentage of the fee and are under pressure from the football authorities to repay the Lancashire club.

The EADT revealed last year how Fulham were among a number of clubs keen on signing the former England Under-21 international but their own financial uncertainty prevented a bid.

Fulham would be allowed to play 24-year-old Bent due to a loophole in the transfer regulations, which this season limit Premiership clubs to buying only during the close season or the January transfer window.

Clubs can sign and field players from a club which is recognised as a 'club in distress,' which includes any club in administration.

So far no club has taken advantage of these rules, although this is the first season the new regulations have been in effect.

Ipswich Town's financial situation is well documented as they prepare a Company Voluntary Agreement (CVA) to offer a deal for creditors.

If Fulham's bid is accepted then Newcastle United could well make another attempt to sign Darren Ambrose and Darren Bent for around £5m for the pair.

All the while Ipswich Town are within touching distance of a play-off place they will try to keep their top stars but clubs know they are becoming increasingly receptive to bids for all their players as they look to trim their wage bill to around £5m from the £24m recorded in the last set of annual accounts.

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