Today’s Football Transfer News looks at the latest from the Championship, including Jack Butland, the goalkeeper now on Chelsea’s shortlist. Plus, the latest on the Jack Grealish saga. FTN, brought to you by Last Word on Football, also looks at the other news and rumours from around England’s second tier.
Championship Transfer News
Hammers Defender to Forest?
Nottingham Forest manager Aitor Karanka is reportedly close to signing Sam Byram from West Ham United. Karanka has been keen to bring in a new right-back, and Byram could become the latest edition at the City ground. Forest have already made ten signings this summer as they attempt to gain promotion.
The attack-minded full-back signed for the Hammers from Leeds in 2016 for an undisclosed fee. After beginning his career at Leeds and making 143 appearances, he has failed to gain a regular place at West Ham. Last season he managed just five games. It is understood that new United manager Manuel Pellegrini will not stand in the way of the 24-year-old.
Record Signing to Leave Swansea?
Andre Ayew is close to leaving Swansea City for the second time. The attacker only rejoined the Welsh club in January for a club-record fee. However, he failed to score and Swansea were relegated. Ayew had been linked to a move to Besiktas but it now appears he is headed elsewhere.
Ayew is now in talks with Fenerbahce over a season-long loan. If the deal goes through, the Turkish side will pay €1.5 million for his services.
Stoke Want Saints Striker
Southampton striker Sam Gallagher is understood to be a target for Stoke City. New Potters boss Gary Rowett is preparing a £7 million bid. Gallagher, who spent last season on loan at Birmingham City, could be surplus to requirements at St Mary’s.
The 22-year-old scored seven goals last season but failed to find the net beyond January. The striker has previously had loan spells at MK Dons and Blackburn. Gallagher has recently been on Southampton’s pre-season tour. However, with several strikers ahead of him, breaking into the first-team could be difficult. A new permanent start could, therefore, be beneficial to his career.
Battle Hots Up For Grealish
Aston Villa’s Jack Grealish could have a tough decision to make in the near future. For weeks it has appeared that Tottenham would sign the talented youngster. However, it is understood that two more Premier League clubs are now interested. Fellow London clubs Fulham and Crystal Palace have made enquiries for the £30 million-rated Grealish.
If Grealish is to leave Villa then a move to White Hart Lane is his preferred destination. However, the 22-years-old is likely to get more game time at both Fulham and Palace. If he plays enough next season and impresses, then England could come calling.
At Spurs, he will face tough competition to gain a regular first-team place. Tottenham will need to act fast if they want Grealish but he will also have a decision to make as to which destination will be best for his career.
Butland On Blues Shortlist
Current Chelsea number one Thibaut Courtois has expressed his desire to leave Stamford Bridge. It is therefore understood that Chelsea have drawn up a shortlist of keepers to replace the Belgian. Stoke City keeper Jack Butland is believed to be on the list.
The England goalkeeper was back-up to Jordan Pickford, who is also believed to be on the Blues’ list, at this summer’s World Cup. Stoke are believed to be prepared to let Butland leave to return to the Premier League. If he does depart, then Stoke will not allow him to leave cheaply. City rate the 25-year old at the same value as Jordan Pickford. The England number one moved to Everton from Sunderland last summer for £30 million.