Crewe Alex: Six-figure deal for Donaldson
CREWE Alex were hoping to finally seal their move for Hibernian striker Clayton Donaldson today.
The Alex have held further talks with the 24-year-old and are ready to make him their latest summer signing.
Crewe previously had a six-figure bid accepted by Scottish Premier club Hibs, but the move stalled.
With two years remaining on his deal, the former York player was believed to have contract issues that delayed him finalising a move.
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But those problems appear to have been resolved and assistant boss Neil Baker confirmed the Alex were closing in on their top target.
He said: "It is fair to say things have moved on and there has been positive progress with the striker we're looking to bring in.
"The club has been speaking with the player again and we're hopeful that the deal will now go through."
Crewe moved for Donaldson after selling prize asset Nicky Maynard to Bristol City for £2.25m ahead of the new season. Donaldson's chances at Hibs have been limited to 13 starts after a successful stint at York, where he notched an impressive 42 goals in 86 league games.
He would become the club's third striker signing this summer following the arrivals of Calvin Zola, from Tranmere, and Anthony Elding, from Leeds.
The latest transfer development comes ahead of tomorrow's clash at Carlisle in League One.
While Zola is expected to recover from an ankle injury in time to play, winger Eugen Bopp is still out with a muscle strain.
Crewe enter the game having lifted their spirits with a 2-0 win against Championship side Barnsley in the Carling Cup, following a 2-1 league defeat to Brighton.
But Baker remains cautious about his side's chances against last year's promotion challengers at Brunton Park.
He said: "There's a level of confidence in the dressing room and a renewed sense of optimism after the win against Barnsley. Whether we can transfer that to the game against Carlisle is another matter. We're certainly hopeful, but they are a good side and the players need to be on top of their games for us to win."
MIDFIELDER Michael O'Connor has been called up to the Northern Ireland squad to play Scotland at Hampden Park next Wednesday.