Perkins linked with Barnsley

COLCHESTER United’s recently named Player of the Year is set to reject a new deal and sign for Championship club Barnsley on a free transfer, according to reports in Yorkshire.

The Tykes have just appointed Keith Hill as their new manager and the Sheffield Star claim he is keen to make Perkins his first signing at Oakwell.

Hill – who led Rochdale from League Two to the brink of the League One play-off places during his five years there (the club’s first promotion in over 40 years) – had the energetic blond-haired midfielder at Spotland between 2007 and 2008.

The pair were seen deep in conversation on the touchline following the Greater Manchester side’s 1-0 defeat at The Weston Homes Community Stadium in April.

Perkins has seen his Colchester career rejuvenated under manager John Ward this season, playing virtually every game he was available for and sweeping the board at the end-of-season awards.

However, this time last year the Lancashire-born player had put in a transfer request stating that he wanted to move back to his native north. He had failed to make a single appearance under previous manager Aidy Boothroyd and had been loaned out to League Two clubs Chesterfield and Stockport.

U’s chairman told the EADT earlier this week that both Perkins and fellow midfielder Ian Henderson – who is also soon-to-be out-of-contract – that they had until the end of this week to sign the new deals or the club would start looking for replacements.

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