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Parkin fine for Royle

PUBLISHED: 20:30 21 June 2005 | UPDATED: 05:56 02 March 2010

IPSWICH boss Joe Royle today confirmed his interest in signing Swindon goal ace Sam Parkin.

The ex-Chelsea trainee is seen as the ideal replacement for departed top scorer Shefki Kuqi, who is locked in talks with Premiership outfit Blackburn.

IPSWICH boss Joe Royle today confirmed his interest in signing Swindon goal ace Sam Parkin.

The ex-Chelsea trainee is seen as the ideal replacement for departed top scorer Shefki Kuqi, who is locked in talks with Premiership outfit Blackburn.

Town are hoping to pair 24-year-old Parkin with their other main target, Nicky Forster, in a new-look strike force next season.

Forster, 31, has already been earmarked for the role vacated by Darren Bent, who moved to Charlton for £2.5million at the beginning of the month.

But Ipswich will have to see off rivals Norwich, as well as Championship foes Crewe and Watford, who are all keen to secure the services of the Robins' hit-man.

Royle said: “I won't deny we are interested in Sam - he was top of our list if Shefki went.

“But our interest is still very much at an early stage and beyond that I don't want to say too much.

“The chairman is talking to Swindon and it is an on-going situation, but by the end of the week I hope to have a much clearer idea of our strike force for next season.”

It is likely to take a fee in the region of £500,000 to land Parkin, who netted 24 goals last season as Swindon finished 12th in League One.

That took his tally to 73 in 142 appearances since being signed at a cost of just £50,000 from Chelsea almost three years ago.

Now the Robins have little choice but to cash in and it looks like a four-way tussle for the 6ft 2ins player's signature.

Parkin insists he won't rush into a decision and he is also keen to explode the myth that he wants to stay close to the capital.

He said: “I see some people are saying I wouldn't be interested in leaving London. That just isn't true.

“I know offers have been received by the club and I'd be a liar if I said I wasn't interested to hear that they're from clubs in a higher league.

“Everyone is aware of the Watford thing but as a player you're obviously interested to hear all the possibilities.

“One thing's for sure, I won't be making any hasty decisions about my future. Nor will I be pushed into anything.

“I've said before that football reasons will have a big part to play in what happens. It's not all about money. I want the best opportunity to progress my career.”

Meanwhile, Norwich boss Nigel Worthington also confirmed this morning that the Canaries have an interest in the powerfully built striker.

“Yes, we have got an interest in the situation and, yes, we are monitoring its progress,” said Worthington, with Parkin potentially an ideal replacement for the departed Mathias Svensson, with goals, age, height and potential all on the London-born forward's side.

The Wiltshire club are understood to have received four offers for the one-time Chelsea apprentice last Friday as they prepare to cash in on their principal asset.

Brighton chairman Dick Knight let the cat out of the bag last night when he revealed that the Seagulls could not match the financial firepower of the East Anglian rivals.

“We can't compete with the likes of Norwich and Ipswich,” said Knight, with the other interested parties understood to be Crewe and Watford, who are set to cash in themselves on Icelandic international Heidar Helguson.

The Hornets have also been boosted by a £1.3million injection of cash - the proceeds of former chairman Elton John's 23,000 sell-out concert at Vicarage Road at the weekend.

Crewe are seeking a replacement for Dean Ashton, who moved to Carrow Road for £3million in the January transfer window and whose goals failed to keep the Canaries in the top flight.

Blackburn are looking to ex-Town favourite Kuqi to erase the nightmare of last season, when their Premiership tally of 32 goals was the worst in the club's history.

Ewood Park boss Mark Hughes is close to completing a deal for the Finnish international and also wants to sign another striker in time for the big kick-off.


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