PETER Crouch completed his move to Burnley on transfer deadline day, 18 years after he nearly signed for the Clarets as a young prospect.

Crouch, a Queens Park Rangers player at the time, was a Burnley target and met then Turf boss Stan Ternent to discuss a move.

The forward opted to join Portsmouth, with Ternent claiming in his autobiography that riots in the town put Crouch off a move to Burnley.

Of his attempt to buy Crouch, Ternent said in his book: "Peter Crouch is sensational in the air and not too bad with his feet.

"He played against us for QPR and I rated him. If you put pegs on his legs they’d look like a washing line but he could withstand a tackle. He was rated at £1million but I was due to spend a bit of cash.

"Crouch would cost us a packet but, as a talisman, he was worth every penny. I persuaded him to come north and we sat in my kitchen to discuss his move. He liked the look of the place. So did his agent."

Crouch, who also had interest from Preston at the time, instead opted to move to the south coast.

Recalling the option of joining Burnley, Crouch, speaking on That Peter Crouch Podcast earlier this season, said: "I was at QPR as a 19-year-old and I had three clubs after me at that point, Preston with David Moyes, Burnley with Stan Ternent and Portsmouth with Graham Rix.

"I went to meet all the managers. David Moyes was over the phone and Stan Ternent was on the M6. We were in a Little Chef and I remember going and we both went to get one of the little trays, we did that and he was amazing."

Speaking in the Lancashire Telegraph in 2001 then Burnley chairman Barry Kilby said the Clarets did all they could to lure Crouch to East Lancashire, having lodged an ultimately unsuccessful bid of £1.25million.

"We did everything to get him but he chose to stay down there and I think they (Portsmouth) perhaps upped the ante a bit," Kilby said. "If it hadn't been a southern club I think we would probably have got him over Preston.

"We were very disappointed about Peter Crouch. It would have been a record signing for us because we valued him very highly."

Fast forward nearly 20 years and Crouch is now a Claret.