Date:Friday June 16 2006
Baggies boss Bryan Robson has been linked with a £1.5 million move for former Albion hitman Jason Roberts.
Former striker Roberts left Albion for Wigan Athletic after an acrimonious fall-out with former Baggies boss Gary Megson back in 2003.
The striker handed in a transfer request shortly after Albion's relegation to the old First Division and he spent a season on-loan at Portsmouth before joining Wigan Athletic.
At Wigan, Roberts enjoyed a successful partnership with Nathan Ellington where both strikers scored an impressive number of goals helping the club win promotion to the Premier League. Ellington of course is now at Albion and is still good friends with Roberts.
An opportunity to re-join Albion and partner Ellington again could prove to be an attractive offer for Roberts, but Albion would face competition from other Premier League clubs and Turkish club Besiktas.
It is unknown whether Roberts would welcome a move back to The Hawthorns, he has always had a good relationship with the Baggies fans, and it was his relationship with former boss Megson that led to his departure.
Roberts is a fantastic player on his day and his pace and power would be a major asset in the Championship. He scored an impressive 14 goals for Wigan last season and has impressed with his all action performances for the Latics.
Albion would face a lot of competition in the race to capture Roberts and in my personal opinion I do not think Roberts would want to make the step down to the Championship with more lucrative offers on the table.
With the futures of Kanu and Kevin Campbell still in doubt Albion boss Robson is looking to bolster his attacking options. Kanu has yet to make a decision on his future and Campbell is stalling on a contract offer from the club as he looks for a move into coaching. Robson has admitted that the only coaching offer at The Hawthorns for Campbell is with the reserve and youth teams. Campbell is looking for something more than this and will wait until later in the summer until he makes his decision.
Celtic striker John Hartson finally looks set to complete his move to The Hawthorns over the weekend after finalising a pay-off with his former club. Hartson had been linked with moves to Portsmouth and Blackburn but neither club made an offer to Celtic for the striker`s services. Newcastle United were the latest club linked with the striker but again no offer was received for the former Welsh international.
Hartson is a fantastic addition to the squad and his power and aeriel ability will prove to be a major asset to us next season in the Championship.
Both Jonathan Greening and Zoltan Gera will have a target man to aim for next season and hopefully they will be able to provide him with the opportunites to fire Albion up the league.
Albion are still waiting on a response from Everton defender David Weir and whether he wants to accept the contract on offer to him at The Hawthorns. Weir has apparently turned an offer down from Birmingham City and would relish the opportunity to link up with former Everton team-mates Steve Watson and Campbell but Everton have also put an offer on the table for Weir who would prefer to stay in the Merseyside area to save moving his family.
There are also stories appearing today linking Albion with a loan move for Manchester United's rookie defender Gerard Pique. There has been no official word from Albion concerning the rumour but Pique would be a great addition to the squad.
Pique signed from Barcelona but has had little opportunity at United; he is good in the air and has a lot of pace. United would hope that if Pique joins Albion it would have the same effect on his career as the loan move that Kieran Richardson had with the club.
Richardson of course went on to play for England and has made over 30 appearances for United after his successful spell at Albion.
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