Royle keen to bring The Goat to Town

IPSWICH Town boss Joe Royle is trying to bring The Goat to Portman Road from First Division rivals Reading.Royle has approached the Royals boss, Steve Coppell, about bringing former Manchester City hitman Shaun Goater to Ipswich on loan.

IPSWICH Town boss Joe Royle is trying to bring The Goat to Portman Road from First Division rivals Reading, writes David Vincent.

Royle has approached the Royals boss, Steve Coppell, about bringing former Manchester City hitman Shaun Goater to Ipswich on loan.

Goater hit the goals as Royle took Manchester City to two promotions and scored for them in the Premiership too.

And this year he has eight goals in 23 appearances for Reading despite suffering a knee injury.


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And though Coppell says private conversations between managers should remain private, Joe Royle revealed: "Yes, there has been dialogue between myself and Steve Coppell about Shaun.

"But he is not the only player we have enquired about.

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"I have spoken to Steve Coppell this week and I still haven't had a response yet.

"I have always felt you need four or even five strikers if you are going for promotion.

"I am aware, with an important part of the season coming up, of our front-line strikers and young inexperienced boys we have now.

"The goals last Saturday don't alter that and I have asked about Shaun."

When he was Manchester City manager, Royle signed Goater from Bristol City, in March 1998 for £400,000.

Despite massive reservations among the City fans he was a real hit at Maine Road, scoring 103 goals in 212 games as Royle took them to promotion.

And Royle made no secret of his admiration for the 33-year-old player.

When Reading came to Portman Road he described Goater as a "gentleman of soccer" and a said: "He proved people wrong by becoming a City legend."

City fans sang: "Feed the Goat and he will score."

Although Goater has returned to the Reading side, Coppell might be prepared to let him go to give him some flexibility in the transfer market.

Goater is thought to be one of the top earners at the Reading.

Coppell has top scorer Nicky Forster available as well as new signing Dave Kitson and Lloyd Owusu on loan from Sheffield Wednesday. He is also chasing Ipswich target Alan Mahon, who has returned to Blackburn Rovers after his loan spell at Portman Road.

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