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AFC Bournemouth

EFL manager refuses to rule out QPR target’s January exit



Bournemouth boss Scott Parker has refused to rule out QPR target Steve Cook leaving in next month’s transfer window.

The 30-year-old has spent nearly a decade with the Cherries, amassing 387 appearances and representing the club in England’s top three divisions, but has fallen out of favour this season.

Cook’s current deal expires in the summer and QPR are among the sides linked with a move in January, though they face competition from both Newcastle United and Watford with a cut-price deal likely given his contract status.

Speaking to the Bournemouth Echo yesterday, Parker was pressed on the centre-back’s future and left the door open to his potential departure.

He said: “There could be a chance.

“Steve’s contract is up at the end of the season as well. I am sure Steve would be the first to say during this first half of the season he would have liked to have played more than what he has.

“But like I always say, I respect Steve, I have a rich respect for him – his quality, his professionalism.

“Come the end of January, he’s someone I’d want still to be here.

“But I also respect Steve’s situation. He is someone who has given incredible service to this football club.

“However that pans out in January, I’m not sure, I don’t know how that could be, so we will have to hear what Steve says, how he feels, and then as a football club where we stand on it as well.

“There is probably a lot to be discussed regarding it really.”

Lloyd Kelly and Gary Cahill have been the first choice centre-back duo under Parker this season with both Chris Mepham and Zeno Ibsen Rossi as cover.

The R’s meanwhile are understood to be in the market for a new central defender as Mark Warburton looks to shore up a backline that has conceded 27 goals this term – the joint-most amongst the division’s top 10 sides.

Can you name which club QPR sold these 26 players to?

1 of 26

1. Todd Kane

The Verdict

This is a boost for the R’s in their pursuit of Cook, with Parker refusing to rule out the experienced defender leaving the club next month.

The 30-year-old has fallen out of favour in 2021/22 but still produced one of the finest centre-back performances of the season when called upon against Fulham.

He could strengthen Warburton’s backline and add some key promotion experience to the squad as they push for a play-off place and perhaps even higher in the second half of the season.

This looks to be one to watch ahead of the start of the winter window.

London-based sports journalist at Snack Media EFL accredited, graduate of New Associates and the University of Brighton

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: EFL manager refuses to rule out QPR target’s January exit

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