Queens Park Rangers manager Mark Warburton has admitted he wants two signings during this month to add depth and competition to his squad, making this transfer revelation to West London Sport.
The R’s were heavily linked with a move for AFC Bournemouth centre-back Steve Cook recently, with Warburton thought to be keen on adding another centre-back to his ranks as he potentially seeks to continue operating with a back three for the foreseeable future.
Not only would this addition provide cover for the likes of Yoann Barbet, Jimmy Dunne and Rob Dickie, all of whom have been regular starters this term, the latter has been linked with a move away in recent months with Leeds United and Wolverhampton Wanderers reportedly interested in him during the summer.
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Football League World understands that another top-flight outfit in West Ham United also have the 25-year-old on their radar with Angelo Ogbonna ruled out for the long term, but it remains to be seen whether a move will materialise for Dickie considering his contract at the Kiyan Prince Foundation Stadium doesn’t expire until 2024.
Cook’s move may also be off now with Nottingham Forest said to be closing in on his signature.
Someone that may be closer to making a move to West London though is Kasey Palmer, with Bristol Live’s Gregor MacGregor reporting that the R’s are in advanced talks with Bristol City over the potential arrival of attacking midfielder Kasey Palmer with Ilias Chair due to compete in the African Cup of Nations this month.
Manager Warburton didn’t name specific targets, but he did reveal the number of players he wanted during the winter window as he said: “I think we need two more, just to cover things.
“We lose three boys to AFCON and I had 15 players for the game against Bristol City. It’s tough.
“Some teams won’t be affected by AFCON. We are badly affected. Then you have Covid and injuries. This truly is a unique time.”
Playing three centre-backs is always a risky business without a sufficient amount of depth, so adding another defender to their ranks can only be a good thing and it’s a shame they look set to miss out on Cook, because he would have been the perfect, experienced head to have in the backline.
For a side that often play with two advanced midfielders behind a forward, the potential signing of Palmer would also give Warburton an option to switch up the formation in Chair’s absence, so you can see exactly why they are pursuing this month.
In saying that, they could also arguably do with another left wing-back with question marks over Lee Wallace’s fitness and Sam McCallum remaining on the sidelines, with another striker also potentially needing to be on their radar if they continue to play two up top.
However, January isn’t the most ideal time to get signings in and this is probably why the second-tier side’s manager is setting a realistic target.
Two is a good start, but it remains to be seen whether they pursue further deals if the price is right, with loan deals also an option having only brought in two during the summer.