Coventry waiting to land Clingan

David Cuffley Coventry City are prepared to wait another 48 hours to land Norwich City midfielder Sammy Clingan - but insist they will not be held to ransom by the player's agent.

David Cuffley

Coventry City are prepared to wait another 48 hours to land Norwich City midfielder Sammy Clingan - but insist they will not be held to ransom by the player's agent.

The Sky Blues are understood to have agreed a fee with the Canaries for the Northern Ireland international, who has not been included in manager Bryan Gunn's squad for the pre-season tour to Scotland and is believed to be keen to move to the Ricoh Arena.

Coventry boss Chris Coleman appeared to pull the plug on the transfer at the weekend when he said it was “dead in the water”, accusing Clingan's agent of scuppering the deal.

But the Championship club are now believed to have given Clingan until Wednesday to sort things out with his agent.

Coventry were close to signing the 25-year-old on Friday until his representative stepped in and demanded a fee.

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“I thought we had one towards the back end of last week but agents being agents that has changed,” revealed Coleman.

“We have said all along, the chairman and I, that we will not bend over for agents. Agents' fees and stuff like that has stopped us signing a good player, and a player we have chased for two months.

“We have not had one conversation with the agent, we have done it all through the club who obviously hold the registration of the player. Then at the last minute we got a call from the agent asking for a ridiculous fee despite the fact that he has done no work whatsoever, and we said no. And I believe we are right to say no and I advised the chairman not to pay the agent because he has done nothing to bring the player to us and nothing for the player.

“So he has stopped us getting the player, which is unfortunate, but I have to say I was happy with the chairman for not paying it because it is the wrong way to do business, and we didn't get the player because of the agent.

“The deal is dead in the water at the minute, so we are going to have to look elsewhere.”

It became clear that Clingan, with one year left on his Norwich contract after signing on a free transfer from Nottingham Forest last summer, did not see his future at Carrow Road when it was confirmed that he and fellow midfielder Darel Russell would play no part in the trip to Scotland.

Neither player was involved in Saturday's 7-2 friendly win at Dartford and assistant manager Ian Butterworth said they would not be travelling to the University of St Andrews training base with the rest of the squad.

Reports yesterday suggested Russell could be part of a potential swap deal with Preston North End winger Simon Whaley heading for Carrow Road.

Clingan has been linked with Coventry and Sheffield Wednesday, and was the subject of a bid from Premier League club Fulham in January.

The two midfielders will stay behind and train at Colney this week, along with defender Dejan Stefanovic, not ready to return to action yet as he continues his recovery from a knee operation.

Said Butterworth: “There's interest in Sammy and there's interest in Darel so we just felt it was in the best interests of everybody that we take a squad to Scotland that is focused and then things will be sorted out back home with those two.

“We believe it's in the best interests that they'll be left behind training at Colney to sort out their futures.

“That's football. It happens at every club. We've got a busy schedule ahead of us. We've got some good games in Scotland and when we come back so we've got to sort players out, we've got to sort positions out and how we're going to play it.”

Stefanovic, who has not played since November, needs longer to get fit, according to Butterworth.

“Dejan is not quite ready to play 90 minutes of football so he's staying about, working hard at Colney,” he said.