Writer: Steve Guscott
Date:Thursday July 9 2009
After losing Kevin Doyle, Leroy Lita and Dave Kitson it is obvious Brendan Rodgers top priority is to get a new striker to the club and it is no secret that his number 1 target is Watford's Tommy Smith.
The Royals have had a bid of £750,000 turned down for the striker and championship rivals Sheff Utd have had a bid accepted of £1.8million. However Rodger's is sure that Smith would prefer to follow him to the Madejski Stadium.
Rodgers told the Reading Post, 'He wants to be here. He`s a player that has turned down a number of moves. My job is to identify the players that I want and then I, in exactly the same scenario as Steve Coppell, let Nick Hammond and the board get on with it.'
He doesn`t have to go anywhere unless he wants to, but there`s been good communication. Nick Hammond`s been having good communication with the chairman there and hopefully, I`m not sure how quickly, there will be some sort of resolution on it.'
'At the moment Tommy is a Watford player, he`s a player who I`ve identified and would love to bring in. I know his work and he`s a big player in the Championship. When you lose 18 goals in Kevin Doyle you want to replace someone with that efficiency and Tommy in every aspect is a big player.'
However Watford chairman Jimmy Russo has hit back at Rodgers comments telling the Watford official website, 'It is with disappointment that I have read Brendan Rodgers' comments regarding our player Tommy Smith. I am somewhat disturbed as to how Brendan knows Tommy's future intentions.
'His comments are not very respectful to the fans and the staff at Watford Football Club and he must not forget that Watford gave him his first managerial opportunity. Reading have failed to meet our valuation of the player in question, in fact last week I labelled the bid 'derisory'.'
Date:Thursday July 9 2009
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