Stockport lead race for Thompson

PUBLISHED: 12:43 17 July 2008 | UPDATED: 15:39 10 September 2010

Linfield's Peter Thompson. Photo: Belfast Newsletter

Linfield's Peter Thompson. Photo: Belfast Newsletter

Michael Bailey

Norwich City look set to miss out to Stockport County in the race to sign Linfield striker Peter Thompson. The Irish club confirmed they had accepted an offer from the League One side for the 24-year-old striker, and at the same time rejected a bid from the Canaries.

Norwich City look set to miss out to Stockport County in the race to sign Linfield striker Peter Thompson.

The Irish club confirmed today they had accepted an offer from the League One side for the 24-year-old striker, and at the same time rejected a bid from the Canaries for the Northern Ireland international.

A statement released by Linfield this afternoon read: “Linfield Football Club have agreed in principle to accept an offer from Stockport County FC for the transfer of Peter Thompson for an undisclosed fee.

“The player has been given permission to talk to Stockport County in a bid to finalise a deal.

“An offer for the player was received from Norwich City but this club's management committee was unable to accept the terms.”

Thompson was a late substitute for Linfield in their Champions League first leg qualifier defeat to Dinamo Zagreb at Windsor Park on Wednesday night - readily acknowledged as his last appearance for the Irish side.

Hartlepool, managed by former Northern Ireland midfielder Danny Wilson, had also since declared their interest in the player although they did not make a formal bid.

Although the Canaries tabled an offer for Thompson after contacting the Blues on Tuesday, which trumped the original £100,000 bid from Stockport, the Linfield board met this morning and agreed for the player to speak to Stockport

Earlier, Linfield manager David Jeffrey told the Belfast Newsletter: “I think you have to face up to facts and certainly Peter is very keen to go. He is in the third year of his contract and was one of the first players here to turn full-time and take a chance - a career decision.

“He wants to play at as high a level as he can and now the opportunity has come along. We want to do what is right for him and what is right for the club.

“At this moment in time there are offers in place from Stockport County and Norwich City which will let him achieve that aim. Now it is a matter for the board looking at what has been put before them and deciding what's the way forward and then it is over to Peter.”

And Jeffrey had been complimentary with the way Stockport handled negotiations.

“They have been professional about it and the fact that their manager and chief executive broke off from a pre-season training trip in Italy to come to Belfast shows their desire for Peter,” he added.

The striker will now discuss personal terms with the League One side, while City boss Glenn Roeder is likely to turn attention to his remaining striker targets.

“Linfield Football Club would like to place on record the club's appreciation of the outstanding contribution made by Peter to the club's successes in recent years. He has been an exemplary sportsman and ambassador for this club and his prolific goalscoring record bears favourable comparison with the greats of this club,” the statement continued.

“Everyone at Linfield extends to Peter every best wish and hopes for success in his future playing career.”

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