Date:Wednesday December 20 2006
If I was in charge of this Reading team and John Madejski asked me who my possible transfer targets were for this coming January, this is who I`d identify. The following players have not necessarily been linked with the Royals but is my own opinion of possible squad-strengthening signings.
Matthew Upson (Birmingham City)
The Birmingham centre-half has refused every offer of a new deal at St. Andrews, and will be out of contract in eighteen months time. Birmingham manager Steve Bruce may want to cash in on Upson and knows that the coming transfer window will realistically be his best opportunity to make a big profit on the £1million that City paid Arsenal for him four years ago.
Upson is rated as Birmingham`s best player by Bruce and has recovered well from an Achilles injury picked up last season. Upson`s main qualities are his pace and the fact that he is a naturally left-footed centre-half, which is a rarity. Arguably, his career started here at the Madejski during a successful loan period from September to December 2002. He has also played seven times for England.
I`d imagine that there would be a number of interested clubs if Upson was made available. Aston Villa, Newcastle, Liverpool, Spurs, Fulham, West Ham, Blackburn Sheffield United, and Wigan have all been paying close attention to the player and would collectively decrease our chances of signing him.
Likely cost: £5million
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