Dagenham & Redbridge reject multiple bids from Portsmouth for Oliver Hawkins
PUBLISHED: 14:00 17 July 2017
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Daggers determined to keep hold of last season’s top scorer
Dagenham & Redbridge boss John Still has confirmed the Essex club have turned down four bids from League One side Portsmouth for striker Oliver Hawkins.
There had much speculation earlier this month that Pompey were keen on bringing the Daggers man, who netted 18 goals in the National League last term, to Fratton Park.
Reports over the weekend also suggested that fellow League One side Peterborough United have also joined the list of clubs interested in Hawkins.
But it seems Daggers are reluctant to sell one of their key players.
When asked how important it is to keep hold of a player such as Hawkins, Still simply replied: “Portsmouth have made four bid for Oliver Hawkins, and they’ve all been turned down.”
If Hawkins was to depart, the Victoria Road side would still have the likes of Elliott Romain, Mason Bloomfield and new signings Michael Cheek and Morgan Ferrier to call on.
Still would surely love that kind of strength in depth at left-back, which looks particularly threadbare with less than a month until the start of the season.
Away to Bedford Town in the opening pre-season friendly on Saturday, Luke Pennell lined up in that position, despite most of his previous appearances for Daggers coming in the middle of defence.
For the second half, Pennell was replaced by teenager Liam Gordon, who is yet to make a senior first-team appearance and only signed his first professional contract earlier this summer.
It would seem, then, that Still would be in the market for a new left-back following the departure of Joe Widdowson to divisional rivals Leyton Orient.
But when asked about his thoughts on what seems like a problem position at left-back, the Daggers boss was fairly coy.
“We have an out-and-out left-back in Luke Pennell and Jake Howells must have played 25 games there for me at Luton Town, so he can play there,” he added.
“Are we still looking at one or two positions? Yes, we are.
“They have to be the right players, we’ve done well in our recruitment so far, so I’m not going to rush in.
“If the right player becomes available and our enquiries find it’s the right player, then we’ll do it, but I’m not rushing around looking for players.”
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