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Wednesday 16 April 2014

Butland could make loan switch

Jack Butland could join a club on loan before the transfer window closes

Stoke manager Mark Hughes is considering loaning out goalkeeper Jack Butland.

The 20-year-old was signed by Hughes' predecessor at the Britannia Stadium, Tony Pulis, for £4million from Birmingham on the final day of the January transfer window.

Butland was immediately loaned back to Birmingham for the remainder of the Championship campaign, but is back at Stoke where he finds himself as third choice behind Asmir Begovic and Thomas Sorensen.

With just a few days of the current transfer window remaining, Hughes has promised Butland he will try to get him another loan deal - with the right club.

"We'll look at every player's individual circumstances," said Hughes.

"Jack's an outstanding 'keeper - I'm very fortunate I've three outstanding 'keepers. In that respect we are well served.

"The important thing for Jack is his development, and we have to make sure the next stage of his career is correct so he progresses at the right level.

"Ideally we would probably want to get him out and get him some game time, but it has to be at the right club with the right philosophy.

"If we have that opportunity of a club that would benefit Jack, and vice versa, then we will look at it.

"If that's not the case then he will stay here and work with an excellent group of goalkeepers and he will learn doing that as well."

Asked whether he would consider another Barclays Premier League club for Butland, who played for England against Italy last year, Hughes added: "It's about circumstances.

"We'll look at every individual situation and see whether the benefits outweigh the negatives."

Butland has been linked with a switch to West Brom in light of Ben Foster being out for 12 weeks with a stress fracture of a bone in his right foot.

West Brom head coach Steve Clarke, however, is keeping his cards close to his chest as he said: "It's disappointing for Ben because he worked hard all pre-season, and we saw with his level of performance he was in a really good place.

"But these things (injuries) are a part and parcel of football, he has to deal with it, and we're looking at 12 weeks maximum.

"Looking at the market we'll see if we can get an experienced back-up, but I'm not going to speak about names.

"There are a number available, some out of contract, and so a number of ways to do a deal."

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