Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 25 December 2014

Scholes to balance the books

Michael Kightly is expected to make a permanent switch to Burnley
Michael Kightly is expected to make a permanent switch to Burnley

Stoke chief executive Tony Scholes is looking to balance the books after manager Mark Hughes' early summer spending.

The Potters have so far signed Sunderland defender Phil Bardsley, Fulham midfielder Steve Sidwell, Hanover striker Mame Diouf and centre-back Dionatan Teixeira from Slovakian club Banska Bystrica.

Scholes said the next natural step was to offload a few who were not in the manager's plans.

Winger Michael Kightly is expected to complete a £1million move to promoted Burnley after a successful loan spell last season which included a clause for a permanent transfer should the club secure a return to the top flight.

However, the future of several other fringe players remains in doubt.

"We will see (if we bring in any new players), it's about if the opportunities present themselves, but we also have to be mindful that we have to keep things balanced up," Scholes told The Sentinel.

"Inevitably, after bringing a handful of new players in already there are one, two or three on the fringes who will probably be moving out.

"You've got to be mindful of the financial and also squad management reasons. You don't want too large a squad.

"We haven't decided to take the rest of the summer off. There is still work being done and a lot of players being tracked.

"If you can get the right deal and the right player it's clearly better to get it sorted as early as you can.

"Moving players out is not just in our hands. It depends on the player and it depends on the club taking them."

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