Santos deal not dead, says Town boss

WATFORD have not given up hope of signing Ipswich defender Georges Santos.The proposed deal looked dead when Santos yesterday rejected the Hornets' opening offer and spoke of his desire to stay at Portman Road.

WATFORD have not given up hope of signing Ipswich defender Georges Santos.

The proposed deal looked dead when Santos yesterday rejected the Hornets' opening offer and spoke of his desire to stay at Portman Road.

But Town boss Joe Royle insisted this morning: "Watford haven't lost interest and I don't think the deal is off yet."

The relegation-threatened Hornets – they are just two points clear of the First Division drop zone – are thought to be weighing up their options.


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Can they afford to make the 33-year-old Frenchman an improved offer, in the hope of seeing him change his mind and head for Vicarage Road?

Hornets' boss Ray Lewington is anxious to strengthen a defence depleted by injuries to key personnel ahead of tomorrow's transfer deadline.

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Royle added: "All I have done is give Georges an opportunity. Whether or not he takes it is entirely up to him.

"I know Georges and he's a good pro. He's not done badly here, as his record of 33 games shows and if he decides to stay he will remain a member of the squad.

"However, if Watford come back with a better offer it will be up to Georges and his representatives to consider it and make a decision.

"I spoke to Ray Lewington yesterday and he is like every other manager in the country – he is working within budget limitations like the rest of us."

Santos is in the Town reserve squad for tonight's Portman Road clash with, ironically enough, Watford (kick-off 7pm).

The full squad: Price, Supple, Barron, Waters, Collins, Santos, Diallo, Patten, Kamara, Mitchell, Bart-Williams, Boardley, Flack, Armstrong, Morrow, Reid, Craig.

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