Sunday 15 September 2019

Derby and Celtic join race for prolific Eoin Doyle

In demand: Eoin Doyle. Pete Norton/Getty Images
In demand: Eoin Doyle. Pete Norton/Getty Images
Daniel McDonnell

Daniel McDonnell

Championship promotion-chasers Derby County and SPL champions Celtic have joined the list of clubs contemplating a January move for Eoin Doyle.

The Dubliner is in line to capitalise on a remarkable campaign where he has already scored 21 goals in all competitions for Chesterfield.

It has placed the League One side in a dilemma heading into the transfer window as they must decide whether to cash in on the 26-year-old.

Derby are considering Doyle because of his movement around the box and predatory finishing that would suit a side who create an abundance of chances. Steve McClaren is interested in adding an individual with his qualities to supplement his squad for the crunch part of the season.

Celtic, who are aware of the League of Ireland graduate from his time at Hibs, have indicated to Doyle's camp that they want to be kept informed of developments in light of the dramatic increase in his strike-rate.

Cardiff City boss Russell Slade is also a fan of the former Shamrock Rovers and Sligo Rovers attacker.

Millwall, Sheffield United, Preston and Bristol City are long-term admirers of a player who is expected to command a fee in the region of £1 million if Chesterfield opt to sell.

His representatives will meet with the Spireites hierarchy later this week to discuss where they stand heading into a period where strikers are in huge demand.

Former Sligo Rovers boss Paul Cook does not want to lose a key player yet respects that Doyle could potentially make a big leap in his career off the back of his impressive run.

Elsewhere, Hull City's move for St Patrick's Athletic defender Sean Hoare could be complicated by speculation surrounding their manager Steve Bruce.

Hoare made a big impression during a brief trial with the Premier League side last month.

Bruce - a candidate to replace Alan Pardew at Newcastle - was particularly taken by the centre-half who also scored highly when he was assessed by the fitness and sports science staff in Humberside.

The 20-year-old has broken through to become a regular under Liam Buckley in Inchicore and started in their famous FAI Cup win over Derry City.

He was also drafted into Noel King's U-21 squad for the double-header with the USA and Russia in Marbella and made his debut as a sub against the latter.

Hoare is under contract at Pat's and they would therefore be entitled to a fee if Hull follow up on their interest.

The Tigers dipped into the League of Ireland market last summer to bring Cork's Brian Lenihan across the water.

Another Leesider who could be on his way to the top flight in the coming year is Preston's Alan Browne.

The physically imposing 19-year-old joined the League One outfit a year ago from Cork City where he was only on the fringes of the first-team squad.

Browne, a midfielder, has taken a big step forward this term, making his 25th appearance of the season in a weekend draw with Crewe.

Swansea have watched the energetic hard worker five times and view him as a long-term option although they may wait until the summer to follow through on their interest.

Browne has also graduated to King's U21 set-up and was part of the Spanish squad along with Hoare.

On the manager front, Chris Hughton says that he is attracted by the job vacancy at Brighton & Hove Albion.

They are seeking a new boss after parting company with Sami Hyppia and Hughton is understood to be in the frame.

The former Irish full-back has told the BBC that the Brighton job would tick the boxes.

"It's a very good club and one that has a tremendous infrastructure," he said.

"Anybody like myself that has been out for a while would be interested in that type of job."

Irish Independent

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