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Burnley closing in on Shackell
8:50am Thursday 14th June 2012 in News
BURNLEY manager Eddie Howe is closing in on Derby defender Jason Shackell, after making rearguard reinforcements a priority.
The Clarets are understood to have had one official £1million-plus offer turned down by their Championship rivals, but are poised to return with an improved bid, in the hope of making the 28-year-old their first summer capture.
But boss Howe is also set to step up his bid to be reunited with striker Sam Vokes in the wake of Jay Rodriguez’s record sale.
The targetman had a successful loan spell with the Clarets last season after arriving on a two-month deal from Wolves.
There were attempts to extend the Wales international’s stay in January, after he scored back-to-back goals in wins over Ipswich and West Ham.
Vokes went on to join Championship rivals Brighton and Hove Albion in the end before returning to Molineux at the end of the season.
He remains contracted to the newly relegated club until next summer.
But Howe, who worked with Vokes at Bournemouth where he progressed through the youth ranks to start his professional career, is keen to be reunited with the 22-year-old on a permanent basis and could be looking at a fee of less than £500,000 to secure the striker’s signature.
Burnley might have to play a patient waiting game, however, as new Wolves boss Ståle Solbakken has yet to meet with his new squad and assess his options for next season.
Ex-Claret Steven Fletcher’s situation could also affect Vokes’ future.
With the Scottish striker linked with Sunderland, and expected to move on this summer after Wolves dropped out of the Premier League three years after winning the Championship, the Midlands side may be reluctant to lose any more of their attacking options ahead of new season back in English football’s second tier.
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