Portsmouth, Sunderland and Ipswich-linked striker stalling on new St Johnstone contract

Pompey-linked striker Guy Melamed is stalling on signing a new deal at St Johnstone.

Tuesday, 4th May 2021, 7:00 am
Updated Tuesday, 4th May 2021, 7:50 am
Portsmouth football club gv Fratton park gv fratton park exterior gv File photo dated 16-05-2019 of General view of Fratton Park, Portsmouth. PA Photo. Issue date: Saturday March 21, 2020. Portsmouth have confirmed that three players have tested positive for coronavirus. See PA story SPORT Coronavirus. Photo credit should read Adam Davy/PA Wire.

And boss Callum Davidson has conceded there's a strong chance the Israeli will leave the Saints this summer.

Melamed joined the Scottish Premiership outfit from Maccabi Netanya in October, signing a one-year deal.

He's been a key player, scoring seven goals in 20 appearances as St Johnstone are set for a mid-table finish.

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Melamed has been offered 'a very good contract' to extend his stay at McDiarmid Park.

But Davidson admits the 28-year-old's future is out of the Saints' hands.

He told The Courier: ‘We’ve offered him a very good contract and his agent just wants to wait and see.

‘That’s all we can do. We can’t offer money that’s not there for somebody. We have a budget, it’s been a difficult time with Covid and we’ve offered him a really good deal. The agent has said he’ll wait and see and that’s where we are.

‘Obviously we can’t be paying out ridiculous money – that’s not what St Johnstone does and we can’t afford it. But there are other players out there that we’ll find and have a look at in case he doesn’t stay.

‘Would we like him to stay? The answer is yes but we might be out priced. The fact he’s done so well has probably not helped our cause.

‘He’s performed and scored goals at really important times this season. It’s a tough one. I knew when he came in that we might only get a year out of him.

‘The one thing none of us knew the extent of was Covid. He didn’t get a pre-season and he missed a lot of football and it took him a long time to adapt to the Scottish league.

‘I still think there’s more to come from Guy if he has a pre-season with us. It’s probably out of our hands at the moment.’