A HOST of scouts from around the world will be in Ukraine this evening with their eyes on Blackburn Rovers’ Martin Olsson – as the race to sign the Swede hots up.
The 24-year-old is expected to feature in Sweden’s Euro 2012 opener against co hosts Ukraine in Kiev and will know his hopes of a move away from Ewood will rest on impressing on the world stage.
Olsson’s agent put clubs on alert last week when he told the Lancashire Telegraph staying at Ewood was “not an option” for his client next season, with considerable interest understood to have followed.
Already wih a number of admirers, it is understood several more Turkish and Italian clubs have joined the chase over the past seven days– as well as a few more Premier League suitors.
European Champions Chelsea are one of those top clubs who will have a representative watching Olsson this evening as they continue to monitor his progress with interest.
Olsson’s domestic future will have to wait until Sweden’s European Championship campaign is concluded, although his representatives will continue talks with Rovers.
While Olsson has his his heart set on quitting East Lancashire this summer, after last season’s Premier League relegation, Rovers are ready to play hard ball to get the right price for him.
Under fire owners Venky’s have history of holding out for big money prices during their disastrous Rovers regime and are ready to do similar with Olsson.
With the player still under contract until 2015, Venky’s will be looking for well in excess of £5million to tempt them into considering a sale.
Venky’s have already been involved in long running transfer sagas over the big money moves of Chris Samba, Phil Jones and Nikola Kalinic and will hold firm in the search for the right price for Olsson.
Sources close to the Swede though are adamant his Rovers career will end this summer as the club contemplate life in the Championship.
They say Olsson will consider his options once the tournament is over as he stays fully focused on helping Sweden progress through a tough group.
Olsson is Rovers’ only player competing in the championships, although their former defender Phil Jones should take his place on the substitutes bench for England against France today.
Jones’ former Rovers academy coach, said: “I hope Phil gets some action in the tournament. It has been a great 18 months for him and this would be the fitting way to cap it all.”