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Friday, June 26, 2009

Cardiff Interest in Delaney and Gorkss? (and Liam Miller and Chad Evans) or Ipswich Signing Delaney?...Danny Maddix on Winning the London Masters

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Delaney to Cardiff or Sheffield United? - South Wales Echo/Terry Phillips - Dave Jones poised for battle with Keane
- DAVE Jones is steeling himself for a million pound tug-of-war with Roy Keane.
- Ipswich Town manager Keane was poised to takeDamien Delaney from QPR – until Cardiff City expressed their interest in the Irish defender.
- Jones is also being linked with moves for Manchester United’s highly-rated young Irish defender Craig Cathcart on loan and Birmingham City’s Liam Ridgewell,.
- With Roger Johnson’s £5m sale to Birmingham completed yesterday, City moved quickly for Delaney, inset, who can play at left-back or centre-back.
- “Delaney was on his way to Ipswich Town, it looked certain the deal would go ahead without a hitch,” said a QPR insider. “That’s on hold while talks progress with Cardiff City.”

- Keane’s offer, which was accepted by QPR manager Jim Magilton, was £750,000 plus another £250,000 if Ipswich qualify for the Championship play-offs.
- Another £100,000 would be paid after Delaney’s 50th appearance.

- The Bluebirds are also keen on Cathcart, who has had loan spells with Royal Antwerp and Championship club Plymouth Argyle.
- The 6ft 3in Cathcart, a player Sir Alex Ferguson believes can make the grade, had a solid campaign with Argyle last season.
- Ridgewell’s place with Birmingham is under pressure now they have signed Johnson from City and Scott Danns from Coventry City. This is South Wales

Or Ipswich..." Lowestoft Journal - Ipswich agree fee for QPR star
- IPSWICH Town manager Roy Keane faces competition from Cardiff City in his attempt to bring left-back Damien Delaney to Portman Road.
- The Blues are believed to have agreed a fee of around £700,000 with Queens Park Rangers over the 27-year-old who was born in Keane's home town of Cork.
- Delaney appeared set to put pen to paper before the weekend, but it now looks as though it will be next week before Keane makes his first Town purchase.
- And then they will have to overcome interest from a Cardiff club bolstered financially by agreeing a £5million move for central defender Roger Johnson to Birmingham City.
- Keane's predecessor at Portman Road, Jim Magilton, was an admirer of Delaney and showed interest in bringing him to Suffolk last season.
- It is understood that the deal to bring the defender to Ipswich was well on the way to being buttoned up before Magilton took over as Rangers manager earlier this summer.
- Magilton would have liked to have kept Delaney, but after being placed on the transfer list last season the player's future has been set to be away from Loftus Road for some while now.
- The former Town boss is on a coaching course this week, and it may now be Monday before any further moves concerning Delaney are made.
- Ipswich will not comment, but it is known that Keane sees left back as a priority as he seeks four players to strengthen his squad for the start of the 2009/10 campaign.
- Ben Thatcher will miss the start of pre-season training on Thursday as he recovers from a medial knee ligament injury, but he should be fit for the start of the season on August 8.
- But there are no other regular left-backs in the Town squad although David Wright, Pim Balkestein and Tommy Smith can all play there.
- Delaney started his career at Cork City and had spells with Leicester, where he would have been known to current Town coach Tony Loughlan, and Hull before joining QPR.
- He won two Republic of Ireland caps last year with the player replying when asked about Ipswich interest: “It's one thing to be wanted, it's another for clubs to agree a transfer.” Lowestoft Journal

Cardiff City look to replace Roger Johnson
Jun 26 2009 by Terry Phillips, South Wales Echo

- DAVE Jones admits Cardiff City could not stand in the way of Roger Johnson’s move to the Premier League – but now faces the task of filling the considerable hole left at the heart of the Bluebirds defence.

Johnson’s £5m move to Birmingham City – which was completed yesterday – swells the coffers for Jones as he looks to fill the central defensive berths left by Johnson and Darren Purse, who moved to Sheffield Wednesday at the end of the season.

“We’ve been paid £5m for a player who cost us £275,000 when he was signed from Wycombe Wanderers,” said Jones.

“Roger Johnson had signed a new contract and we could have said no, but we could not deny him the chance of Premier League football.”

Now Jones needs to repeat the feat and find another gem to complement left-sided Gabor Gyepes, the Hungarian international plucked from the lower divisions with Northampton Town.

So just who is on Jones’ shopping list?

One option is highly-rated Craig Cathcart, a 20-year-old developing under Sir Alex Ferguson at Manchester United.

Belfast-born Cathcart has had loan spells with Royal Antwerp and Plymouth Argyle, where he made more than 30 Championship appearances last season.

Strong in the air and in the tackle, Cathcart is also comfortable in possession.

Jones may even go back to Birmingham City for talks with Liam Ridgewell.

A regular in Birmingham’s promotion-winning team, having signed in a £2m move from Aston Villa two years ago, Ridgwell could find his path to the first team at St Andrews blocked by Johnson and fellow summer signing Scott Dann, for whom the Blues paid £8.5m.

Jones is a known to be a fan of 6ft 3in Latvian international Kaspars Gorkss.

Gorkss first appeared on City’s radar last summer as a possible replacement for Glenn Loovens, but QPR stepped in to sign him from Blackpool.

It would take a hefty offer to prise the Riga-born centre-half from Rangers after he formed a solid partnership with Damion Stewart at Loftus Road.

Another defender Jones admires is Charlton Athletic’s Mark Hudson.

The Bluebirds moved for Hudson when Purse was keen to sign for Norwich City during the January transfer window, but Charlton wanted him to aid their ultimately doomed fight against relegation.

Out-of-contract Spanish defender Miguel Angel Llera is another potential City target, having played a major part in MK Dons’ chase for promotion last season.

Llera, 29, and Liverpool-born Sean O’Hanlon, 26, were the two main central defenders for MK Dons last season and either could make the step up to the Championship, having missed out in the play-offs last term.

Doncaster Rovers’ Matt Mills remains a target for a number of Championship clubs, including City.

He is among the most coveted defenders in the division and Nottingham Forest made an official bid of £2m.

That was turned down and Forest manager Billy Davies has currently turned to Blackpool’s Shaun Barker instead.

Manchester City’s Tal Ben Haim, plus West Ham United pair James Collins and Callum Davenport would also be players of interest to the Bluebirds, but are unlikely to want a permanent move to the Championship.

Any of the three, though, may agree to a loan move which would mean they stay on their current Premier League wages.

Jones is keen to strengthen his Cardiff City team in all outfield areas.

Paul Quinn (Motherwell) and Damien Delaney (Queens Park Rangers), the Irishman who can play at left-back or centre-half, have been discussed by Bluebirds’ staff, while Liam Miller is a central midfield player out of contract and released by Sunderland.

Former Manchester United player Miller has Premier League and European experience. He is also a free agent.

Manchester City’s young striker Ched Evans remains near the top of Jones’ list.

The £3m asking price is way too high – at least double the fee interested clubs Cardiff City and Sheffield United will pay.

Evans would surely not initially be a first-choice striker with Cardiff City with Jay Bothroyd and Michael Chopra likely to start in the opening league match at home to Scunthorpe United. This is South Wales

Ben Kosky/Kilburn Times - Maddix finally Masters the art of winning trophies
- DANNY Maddix paid tribute to his team-mates following his first trophy as a QPR player on Saturday - eight years after leaving the club.
- The centre-back captained Rangers' over-35 team to their first ever London Masters success as they beat West Ham in a penalty shoot-out at Wembley Arena to reach the national finals.
And the Rs' victory was all the more impressive given that they lost two of their nine-man squad - Steve Palmer and Bradley Allen - to injury early in the evening.
"I take my hat off to the lads," Maddix told the Times. "To do it with seven men shows how much work the others put in. We didn't expect to win it with some of the other teams and the players they had.
"It's a real achievement and it feels great. I said to the lads in the changing room 'that's the first time I've won anything for QPR!'
"Obviously you have pre-season trips where you might win a cup, but it's not the same as when it's televised. I didn't realise the number of QPR supporters that were here until I lifted the trophy.
"It's good to meet up with the boys I used to play with a good 10 or 15 years ago - some of them playing for other teams. Maybe they should have come and played for us instead!"
Rangers' squad will travel to Liverpool in September to contest the national Masters title with the seven other regional winners. Kilburn Times

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