Monday 18 December 2017

Transfer trail of what might have been

January 2013

Celtic, wary of losing Gary Hooper, were looking for a striker. Enter Doyle into their plans.

The Scottish champions wanted to bring him to Glasgow on loan until the end of the season but Wolves refused to release him.

"It was close that one but it didn't happen," recalled Doyle.

January 2012

Everton's then manager David Moyes spoke directly to Wolves about signing the Wexford man.

But Mick McCarthy, in one of his last acts as Wolves manager, refused to sanction the deal.

Moyes had a very useful Plan B tucked up his sleeve, though. Rangers' financial meltdown freed up Nikica Jelavic and Moyes profited from the Ibrox firesale, signing the Croatian for a relative bargain price of €6m.

August 2010

Having tried, and failed, to sign him when he was Fulham's manager, Roy Hodgson returned to the negotiating table with an €11m bid on transfer deadline day to lure him to Liverpool, which Wolves immediately turned down.

Had Hodgson initiated talks a month or so earlier, then the likelihood is that they would have got their man and Doyle would have been playing at Anfield.

But Wolves, knowing they had no replacement lined up, blocked the move.

June 2009

This time Doyle did go – joining Wolves for €7.5m.

Fulham were the other main contenders and matched Wolves' bid but Mick McCarthy's sales pitch convinced Doyle to say yes to him and no to Roy Hodgson.

Fulham would go on to reach the Europa League Cup final at the end of the season. Interestingly, Aston Villa – managed by a guy called Martin O'Neill – also showed interest that summer

August 2008

On deadline day, Dimitar Berbatov was sold to Manchester United for €36m and, out of nowhere, Tottenham decided they wanted Doyle from Reading.

They left it so late before they made their move for the Irishman, though, that the unlikely event of a deal being rushed through was missed.

Irish Independent

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