Town face striker competition
Ipswich Town could face competition from Celtic for the signature of the Scottish international striker Derek Riordan from Hibs, writes David Vincent.The hot property hit 20 goals last season in 36 games and was called into Walter Smith's Scotland squad as a reward for his form.
Ipswich Town could face competition from Celtic for the signature of the Scottish international striker Derek Riordan from Hibs, writes David Vincent.
The hot property hit 20 goals last season in 36 games and was called into Walter Smith's Scotland squad as a reward for his form. The 22-year-old's overall record is even more impressive with 36 goals in 67 appearances for the Edinburgh club.
Town boss Joe Royle aims to bring in a pair of strikers to replace Darren Bent and Shefki Kuqi. Academy product Bent was sold to Charlton Athletic for an initial £2.5 million while Kuqi has refused a new two-year contract on offer and left.
The free agent's destination is unclear; Blackburn Rovers interest seems to have cooled but he could end up at one of the promoted clubs. West Ham United, Sunderland and Wigan are all aiming to expand their squads, and Royle is convinced Kuqi has gone to play in the Premiership.
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Relegated Crystal Palace, while insisting top striker Andy Johnson is not for sale, could hold out for a large transfer fee and sign the Finnish international on a Bosman as a replacement.
Meanwhile in Scotland, Celtic fans are beginning to worry about the lack of new faces in their squad. Gordon Strachan has been linked with a lot of transfer targets including Ipswich midfielder Tommy Miller, who is bound for Sunderland, and Riordan but not much has happened.
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Hibernian chief executive Rod Petrie denied latest reports that Celtic had bid more than £300,000 for Riordan and were also going to sign Hibs full-back Steven Whittaker. The situation with Riordan is different. Hibs boss Tony Mowbray has said he will listen to offers for him.
He has effectively put the player up for sale after he refused to sign a new extended contract.