Watford's Tommy Smith 'wants' to join Reading FCBy Jonny Fordham
July 08, 2009
Brendan Rodgers today admitted that top transfer target Tommy Smith wants to join him at Reading.
The Northern Irishman sees his former Watford striker as the ideal replacement for Kevin Doyle after his record £6.5million sale to Wolves last week.
Royals’ bid of £750,000 was rejected by the Hornets last week and Sheffield United had a £1.8million offer accepted the same day.
But the 36-year-old Reading boss admitted: “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 (director of football) Nick Hammond and the board get on with it.
“I’ve made it clear we’ve made the intent that this was the offer.
“There were a number of other offers for Tommy and then one big one came in (from Sheffield United).”
Rodgers has been linked with a number of Watford players after he left Vicarage Road for Madejski Stadium last month.
And Rodgers has always been a keen admirer of the 29-year-old who scored 17 goals last season with 12 assists to boot.
But he added at the moment there was little he could do.
“He doesn’t have to go anywhere unless he wants to,” said Rodgers.
“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.”
Rodgers continued: “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.”
Rodgers also ruled out an offer for Watford’s Tamas Priskin and Leeds United’s Robert Snodgrass- two other players linked with joining his Royals revolution.
But when he was asked if he was looking at loaning some of Chelsea hottest young talents Rodgers said that option was “a strong possibility”.
He refused to name names but when Michael Mancienne, Ryan Bertrand and Jack Cork where all put to the Reading boss Rodgers did manage a slight smile.