Latest Rumours Dealt With

Given the rather unpredictable nature of some social media posts, I thought I’d do a little run down of where some of the rumours are currently and how likely the players mentioned are to actually rock up at City. Let’s get straight on with it, shall we?

Theo Robinson

Firslty, bear in mind that this rumour initially appeared on one of the less reputable ‘in the know’ accounts on Twitter. Usually, I wouldn’t give those much credence, but later a couple of people closely connected to the club commented on what a positive move it would be. With that sort of validation I thought it might have some legs. Bear in mind, if I discussed everything Twitter threw at us I’d be debating Ollie Palmer to Eastleigh which is something I think is nothing more the rumour.

However, the Theo chat all fits. Danny knows him, he’s out of favour at Southend and he would add value to the squad, rather than the first team. He was named on the bench today though, but didn’t get on as Phil Brown’s side slipped to a 3-1 defeat against Northampton. Had they not got rid of Nile Ranger earlier in the week I strongly suspect Theo would have been sat in the stands.

I still think there is merit in this one and, despite the rather mixed reaction, I think he has a lot to offer the squad if he were to sign.

Lee Frecklington

I have an ear worm at present, a song that keeps going round my head and won’t give up. It’s to the tune of ‘Que Sara’ and it goes something like this: “Will it be Mansfield, will it be Lincoln? Here’s what she said to me……” The next line is the crucial element I just can’t decide on.

Freck (pictured top) keeps being spotted in Lincoln, hardly surprising given that he lives here. Rumour keeps linking him with a desire to move into coaching and two clubs with whom he has connections. Obviously we’re one and his former manager Steve Evans is also allegedly after him at Mansfield. They might be closer to his current wage, but in a pre-season interview he spoke of a desire to play for Lincoln again one day.

He was left out of Rotherham’s New Year’s Day squad, some say injury and others say he was deciding his future. Since then it has gone quiet although one or two fans claiming to be ‘in the know’ are declaring his imminent arrival. On December 30th he came off after 63 minutes of their match against Wigan, perhaps pointing to injury as the likely cause of his absence.

Ricky Miller

Posh are one point behind Rotherham in the race for a play-off spot, but they’re claiming to have pinched Kieffer Moore from Ipswich after his successful loan spell at the Millers. If that is true it does hasten the exit of Mr Miller, although I suspect his imminent departure was agreed long before Moore was ever due at London Road.

Miller wasn’t in the squad to face Aston Villa in today’s FA Cup, he was apparently discussing terms on a move to an unnamed club. Now, if he was discussing terms it would surely be with a club that did not have a game, thus ruling out Mansfield Town.

The favoured destination according to reports is Cambridge United, but one wonders if their current boardroom upheaval means they’re in a position to spend the sort of money Posh are looking for. Various sources have given me a figure that Barry Fry has in mind for the troubled striker, the lowest of those numbers is £150k, the highest £300k.If it is the latter, or indeed anything over the former, I think it rules City out. We might have the funds but Danny Cowley will not spend money he thinks is risky. With undoubted talent, Miller poses an investment of sorts, but you have to keep him on the straight and narrow and for that alone, he should come at a knockdown price.

I still don’t think this is going to happen I’m afraid. We know Danny admires Ricky’s ability, he spoke highly of him and put a bid in last season. I once recall Danny saying you can accommodate one ‘wayward genius’ in a squad, but any more than that and it becomes a problem. Could we find a spot for Miller? Would he be happy playing second fiddle initially to Green and Rhead? Has their form convinced Danny the spending needs to be elsewhere? All questions only one man has the answer too and, as usual, Danny remains tight-lipped until the business is done.

 

Fraser Franks

Franks captaining the England C team in 2014.jpg
By Sfcboro – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,

Franks is another name that keeps popping up and perhaps crucially, he’s a central defender. With the surprising departure of Rob Dickie, Danny will be hoping to wrap up some business rather swiftly and I’m told we coveted Franks in the summer.

Franks sat out our 3-0 win against Stevenage on Boxing Day, but started the next two matches against Crawley (0-1) and Cheltenham (4-1). He’s only ever come off the bench four times for them, two of which have been in the last two weeks. He’s out of contract at the end of the season and seems to be out of favour at a club he’s previously made 95 starts for. He came off the bench in today’s 0-0 draw with Reading in the 88th minute, hardly the sort of appearance an in-favour player makes.

My transfer senses are tingling when I see Franks at the moment. He’s a quality centre-half, good enough for England C as well as making 46 starts for Stevenage last season. All of a sudden he’s bench warming? It doesn’t add up, unless he’s not signing a new deal and wants away. Maybe he’s seen what Danny and Nicky are looking to build and decided he wants to be a part of it. Maybe Darren Sarll is looking to change something and Franks is just the fall guy. Either way, I wouldn’t be surprised if he didn’t end up leaving the Lamex, with us one of a couple of destinations he might choose. He’d be a good signing too, even more so when you consider how few bodies we have that can play centre half.

Ben Whitfield

City had been linked with the Bournemouth winger, but it’s a dead deal I’m afraid. He’s gone back to Port Vale on loan, their manager Neil Aspin had this to say:  “There were a few scenarios that could have happened with Ben. We did make an offer to Bournemouth to sign him permanently. That was a distinct possibility, and there was also the chance he could have gone to another club, but I think the major factor with Ben is he was enjoying his football here and he wants to stay. It’s good for all parties. It gives Ben a chance to continue playing football for us and also I suppose it puts him in a good position for Bournemouth. If he does really well they are probably in a stronger position in terms of his future.”

Lewis McGugan watford.jpg
By Franziska – Flickr: 140415 Watford Training Ground-176, CC BY 2.0, 

Lewis McGugan

The former Forest midfielder recently joined up with Northampton Town, but after just two months he’s on the move again. They’ve released him, along with full back Ryan McGiven. Some reports have suggested City are in for the free agent who didn’t disappoint as such at Northampton.

He joined the club after being released by Sheffield Wednesday, and made his debut in the Checkatrade Trophy clash at Peterborough United at the beginning of October. He went on to make 10 starts and four substitute appearances, and was a starter as recently as last Saturday at Portsmouth, where he created Town’s goal, scored by Chris Long. The high point of the 29-year-old’s Cobblers stint was his stunning volleyed goal in the 3-3 Checkatrade Trophy draw with Southampton Under-21s, a strike that won him the club’s goal of the month prize for November. Basically, he’s still got it.

He’s got a bit of the ‘Cameron Stewart’ about him, a player with Championship ability slowly dribbling down the leagues. When you consider what Danny has done with Neal Eardley, perhaps there’s a chance he could revitalise McGugan?  He was born in Long Eaton, so a move to City would also keep him close to home. There’s a few reasons he wouldn’t sign, he’s never dropped into League Two before and reports have linked him with an as-yet unnamed League One club. However, after we signed Bozzie I believe anything is possible!

 

 

 

2 Comments

  1. Interesting as ever Gary. We need to let go of the thought of Miller though. OK, so DC can handle one bad apple, but really does he need this? It would unsettle the squad for little benefit. And where do we draw the line? Ched Evans perhaps! Give me a break.

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