Thursday 21 September 2017

Ireland's Robbie Brady 'being used as a bargaining chip' in transfer scramble

Robbie Brady’s. Photo: Stephen Pond/Getty Images
Robbie Brady’s. Photo: Stephen Pond/Getty Images
Kevin Palmer

Kevin Palmer

Crystal Palace may be using their interest in Republic of Ireland defender Robbie Brady as a bargaining chip in their battle to sign Sunderland’s Patrick van Aanholt, Independent.ie understands.

Palace manager Sam Allardyce has made Van Aanholt his top target in the left full-back position, with the former Sunderland manager keen to be reunited with a player he admired during his brief spell as Black Cats boss last season.

While Sunderland are haggling over a fee for 26-year-old Van Aarnholt, Palace are keen to make  it clear that they have an alternative defensive target in mind and are willing to turn their attentions to Norwich star Brady.

Yet we understand Allardyce is still keen to land Van Aarnholt, after he spoke publicly about his interest in the defender last week.

“Until the chairman rings me up and says the Patrick van Aanholt deal is dead, it is still ongoing for me,” stated Allardyce last week.

“Until we hear that Sunderland are not selling, we are interested. Whether they have got any farther, the chairman will update me later on today or tomorrow.”

Burnley remain firmly in the mix to secure Brady's signature and are in negotiations with Norwich over a deal that could be worth as much as £12m.

Meanwhile, Norwich are keen to sign defensive cover before sanctioning Brady's exit, with the Dutch duo of Mitchell Dijks and Marvin Zeegelaar reported to be on the wish-list of under-pressure Canaries boss Alex Neil.

Norwich sold their Swedish defender Martin Olsson to Swansea earlier this month and Brady may not be allowed to make his move back to the Premier League until a replacement is secured.

Burnley are still the favourites to sign Brady if he is given permission to leave Norwich this month, in a move that would see him linking up with his Irish colleagues Stephen Ward and Jeff Hendrick at Turf Moor.

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