Spartak open to offers as Hull join hunt for McGeady
Hull City have become the fourth Premier League club within the last week to be linked with a move for Ireland winger Aiden McGeady.
Newcastle United, Aston Villa and Everton have also been reported as suitors for the 27-year-old, whose contract with Spartak Moscow expires in June but who is clearly interested in leaving Russia before then.
"Over the winter, if we get an offer which suits Spartak, then McGeady will go," said Spartak's sporting director Roman Askhabadze. "But if a suitable offer does not come in, he will be with us until the end of his contract."
While there is genuine interest from all four clubs to sign McGeady, the level of intent varies -- Everton being the most proactive to date in their pursuit.
From the Glaswegian's perspective, the option of signing a pre-contractual agreement with one of the four Premier League clubs in January and remaining with Spartak until the end of the Russian season provides him with extra bargaining power.
Elsewhere, Rory Delap is expected to formally announce his retirement today, after one of his Burton Albion team-mates prematurely tweeted yesterday that the former Ireland international had already called time on his playing career. At 37 the news is hardly the most surprising, yet some paperwork still has to be sorted before it becomes official.
That hasn't stopped his former Stoke City team-mate Danny Higginbotham paying tribute to the ex-Southampton, Derby, Sunderland, Stoke and Carlisle midfielder, who won 11 Ireland caps.
"I have known Rory since he was 21 and know he won't take a decision like this lightly," said Higginbotham.
"He is one of the nicest lads you could meet in the game -- the first to be on the phone if something bad happened to you and you needed a pick-me-up."
In other news, Aston Villa are set to disappoint Middlesbrough and recall Shay Given from his loan spell at the end of this month.
Ipswich Town striker David McGoldrick is to contact the FAI to make them aware of his eligibility to play for Ireland. The 26-year-old won the Championship Player of the Month in September and qualifies for Ireland through his grandparents.
However, it has emerged that Liverpool full-back Jon Flanagan is ineligible to switch allegiance from England to Ireland as he does not meet the criteria.