Norwich Lead Watkins Pursuit
Norwich City are 'in pole position' to sign Barnsley winger, Marley Watkins, according to the EDP
According to this morning's report, Ipswich Town are very keen on 26 year old Watkins but now look set to lose out on the flying forward. The EDP suggest that Ipswich made two bids for Watkins last January in the region of seven figures - yes, you read that correctly, SEVEN figures. I thought Mick McCarthy's transfer budget was an old shoe, didn't you?
Anyway, Watkins revealed last week, as we reported, that he was leaving Oakwell on a free transfer when his contract expires on June 30th, after scoring 10 goals in 45 games this season.
That form has made him a wanted man, with Celtic, Aston Villa, Cardiff and Bristol City all keeping tabs on him.
Ex-Ipswich hero, Terry Butcher managed Watkins at Inverness but now fears the Tractor boys are about to miss out.
"I think he will now go to a club that will be able to offer him a lot more than what Ipswich can pay him," he told the EADT. "Unfortunately, I think he will be moving on to bigger and better things now as there are a number of quality clubs looking at him. Celtic have been linked with him in Scotland and then there is interest from some high-end Championship clubs and even the Premier League. He was an unknown when I signed him and he progressed well and went on to win the Scottish Cup with Inverness.
"He is quick, has a lovely touch, he is immensely strong and good in the air. He is a nice lad too, I never had a problem with him - he was a pleasure to work with. He has got unbelievable potential and is hungry to succeed."
There isn't any specific detail as to how the EDP know that Norwich are 'in pole position' to sign Watkins but as local journos with plenty of contacts up and down the country, they no doubt have an inside track. Otherwise, I'd be surprised that they'd be so confident.
A quick check of social media show plenty of links between Watkins and Norwich, along with every other man and his dog too. His contract doesn't expire until June 30th, so don't expect a confirmation either way in the next few days.
He looks like a decent acquisition, hard working and with an eye for goal.