DOUGIE Freedman is not entertaining transfer talk about Mark Davies, for now.
Leicester City have been heavily rumoured as a potential destination for the midfielder in the last week – with sources close to the player claiming that talks have taken place over a £2million deal.
It had even been suggested that Wanderers had taken Davies out of the team in recent weeks to protect him from injury so the deal could take place.
Both Wanderers and Leicester have played down the talk, with Freedman insisting that Davies’s absence is simply over-cautiousness on his part after a dip in the 26-year-old’s fitness.
“My problem with him is that he had such a long time off – nine months – and I threw him right back into the deep end,” he said. “I just felt that he had a bit of a burnout and developed that groin problem, so I’m really being over-cautious on him.
“He won’t feature against Charlton for the same reason.”
Freedman says there has been no contact with the Foxes, who have tracked Davies in previous transfer windows.
But the Wanderers boss is pragmatic enough to accept the club would be unlikely to turn down a serious offer for any players this summer, with finances as tight as they are.
Freedman was in bullish mood yesterday as he looked ahead to tomorrow’s visit to Charlton Athletic and admitted he would not stand in any player’s way if they wished to leave the Reebok this summer.
“If people come in for any of my players, then the first conversation would be ‘do you want to stay?’” he said.
“If the answer is ‘yes’ then I’d keep them, no doubt. But everything is for sale. It would be silly to say you’d answer every question with a ‘no’.
“Everything is looked at and has a value on it, and if a player says to me he’d like to move on then I’d move anyone on that doesn’t want to be here.
“I’m fed up, in 20 months of being here of players who feel this football club owes them something. They think it’s their damn right that ‘I should be playing this week.’ “We should be looking forward and I want players who want to be here. If they don’t want to be here, then that’s my attitude – go.”
Wanderers are yet to confirm their playing budgets for next season but Freedman is expecting to have to balance the books again.
While Lukas Jutkiewicz appears to be top of the shopping list, the £1.5million price tag Middlesbrough have placed on him may be an issue, unless money can be raised from player sales.
And Freedman, who has long been an advocate of re-establishing the Whites as a “trading club” is going into the close-season with his eyes wide open.
“I have got to do some trading. This club hasn’t done enough in the past. It hasn’t produced enough assets to trade,” he said.
“We’ve relied on loans, then when they go back we start all over again.
“I’m yet to see what the budget is going to be for next season but I don’t think it will be as it has been.
“I would like to think I can keep a hold of one or two, but know that one or two will move on and a few will come in.
“I think it will naturally cut itself up with a few coming to the end of their contract who are on good Premier League money.
“It’s definitely opened my eyes that we need to trade. I owe it to the fans that we see some fresher, younger faces because when we’ve had that, results have improved.”