Gunn targets MK Dons' Miguel Angel Llera
Bryan Gunn has set his sights on Spaniard Miguel Angel Llera as he begins rebuilding his Norwich City team from back. Gunn is in need of central defensive strength and the MK Dons defender fits the bill - and the added bonus is that he wouldn't cost a penny in transfer fees.
Bryan Gunn has set his sights on Spaniard Miguel Angel Llera as he begins rebuilding his Norwich City team from back.
Gunn is in need of central defensive strength and the MK Dons defender fits the bill - and the added bonus is that he wouldn't cost a penny in transfer fees.
Llera's contract expires in the summer and with only a one-year deal on offer has decided to leave for free.
The 29-year-old made 34 appearances for MK last season and, according to reports, Norwich and Charlton have already declared their interest, with Doncaster and Cardiff also monitoring the situation.
Gunn has admitted that he needs to start from the back as he assembles his League One squad for next season. He has just about given up on bringing Jason Shackell back to Carrow Road after the Canaries Academy product's successful loan spell from Wolves at the end of the Championship campaign.
That leaves him with only two dedicated centre-halves - skipper Gary Doherty and the injured Dejan Stefanovic - although he does have a decision to make on where he plays Michael Spillane, back from his season-long loan at Luton Town.
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Gunn had been in the market for Cardiff's Darren Purse, but he's joined Sheffield Wednesday.
However, balancing the books will be a major consideration this coming season, so picking up Llera for nothing would make sense.
Llera joined MK on a free transfer last summer from Spanish Second Division side Hercules.
Gunn brought in Adrian Leijer on loan last season, but the Fulham centre-half is unlikely to return, with another Championship loan spell likely if he doesn't figure in Roy Hodgson's plans.
“I really enjoyed the loan,” said the Australian. “I didn't play as much as I would have liked to, but I think just dropping down that level, I was more comfortable in the environment and really enjoyed it, and I suppose I got a bit of confidence back as well and a bit of belief in my own game.
“I think when you're at that Premier League level and things aren't going the way you'd like, you start doubting yourself, but dropping back gave me that bit of confidence and I really enjoyed my football for the last three or four months at Norwich.
“Premier League's a very high standard and, I suppose, I felt I fit in well at Championship level. Whether I go on loan back to Championship next season or not, that remains to be seen.
“I've spoken to a lot of people and they've said making it in the EPL is hard work, and if it was easy everyone would be doing it, so I'll just keep at it and keep working hard. My attitude is probably what's got me there and it's what has to keep me there.
“I'd love to get game time, I think I'm at the stage where I really need game time now. That's something that I hope will happen next season, but at the moment it's time to switch off and have a mental break more than anything.”
Meanwhile, Blackpool are said to be monitoring the progress of former City skipper Mark Fotheringham, who is a target for La Liga giants Espanyol after his release by City.
t Paul McVeigh was one of five players released by Luton Town yesterday. McVeigh, who spent seven and a half years at Norwich, was out of contract and has recently had trials with Darren Huckerby's MLS team the San Jose Earthquakes. Also released by Luton were Dean Brill, Sol Davis, Dean Morgan and Sam Parkin while Drew Talbot has been made available for transfer.