Striker deal close as other bid is rejected

Luke Varney is close to a move to Pompey
Luke Varney is close to a move to Pompey
Brett Pitman. Picture: Joe Pepler

Posh manager wary of Pompey striker’s threat

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Pompey are closing in on making Luke Varney their third summer recruit.

But they have been rebuffed in their pursuit of fellow striker target Martin Paterson.

The Blues are this week expected to finalise a switch worth in the region of £750,000 for Varney.

The former Crewe man is surplus to requirements at Derby, who are keen to offload him to help fund their spending plans.

Meanwhile, Varney told The News last week he would relish working with Blues boss Steve Cotterill if the opportunity arose.

Now Pompey are close to sealing a move for the 28-year-old, who scored five Premier League goals while on loan at Blackpool last season.

However, the club have received a set back in their hunt for Paterson.

Burnley have so far rejected two bids for the 24-year-old and appear intent on keeping him at Turf Moor.

Steve Cotterill remains a big fan of the striker, though, and is likely to return with another offer to secure his services.

Paterson was one of the inspirations behind the Clarets’ promotion to the Premier League two years ago.

Since then he has suffered a succession of injuries, restricting him to 34 league appearances in the past two seasons.

Regardless, Burnley boss Eddie Howe does not want to let him leave without a fight.

And so far Pompey’s Championship rivals have failed to be tempted to do business following two bids.

Cotterill is desperate to strengthen his striking ranks for next season.

David Nugent is expected not to pen a new deal and go elsewhere, while Danny Webber was released at the end of last season.