Conor Washington deal must be right for the club, says Exiles boss
NEWPORT County AFC are determined to get the best deal possible if they are to lose striker Conor Washington this month.
The 21-year-old, County’s joint top scorer with seven goals this season, has been the subject of several bids from League One Peterborough United since the transfer window opened on January 1.
The Exiles have so far rejected every offer from Posh and boss Justin Edinburgh is still hopeful of keeping the player at Rodney Parade, at least until the summer.
But Washington, whose family remain in the Peterborough area, is understood to be keen on the move and Edinburgh admits that the deal could still go through before the window closes on January 31.
“We have received an offer from Peterborough,” Edinburgh confirmed.
“We’ve had dialogue, myself and Tim Harris, with Barry Fry and Conor is fully aware of it but as we stand now the deal isn’t progressing.
“They’ve made an offer. It’s a very good offer but I, as a manager, need to do right by the football club.”
The club stand to make a tidy profit on Washington, who was working as a postman before he arrived from part-time outfit St Ives Town in Cambridgeshire in October 2012 for a fee of around £5,000.
“Obviously it’s a step up for Conor,” said Edinburgh. “It’s on his doorstep and they’re a good club doing very well with players from the lower levels.
“It’s a fantastic opportunity for him and one that we have to be realistic and honest about. Any individual wants to better himself.
“He hasn’t knocked my door down but he has made me aware that it is a fantastic opportunity for him.
“I hope we don’t lose him but you can never say never,” he added. “If I sat here and said that’s not going to happen between now and the end of the window that wouldn’t be truthful because things happen.
“But right now he’s focused and he’ll be in the squad for Saturday.”
As shown with the sale of midfielder Lee Evans to Wolverhampton Wanderers last January, County are unlikely to stand in the way of the player if the deal is right.
But they will press hard for the highest fee possible and insist on a sell-on clause. They will also need to find a replacement in the next week.
“If I was to let Conor go I would have to bring a striker in and at this time of year, this late in the window, that’s not an easy position to fill,” said Edinburgh.
“Obviously we’ve got Zebroski and O’Connor to come back from injury but you don’t know when they’ll be able to get back to form.
“The deal is a good deal for the football club and it’s a good deal for the boy but at the moment it’s not right for his teammates.”
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