Swansea City target Kenwyne Jones set for Liberty start
KENWYNE Jones looks set to face his potential employers tomorrow as Swansea City play cat and mouse in their search for a striker.
Huw Jenkins has refused to discuss Swansea's transfer plans after the club saw an offer for Jones, thought to be worth around £3 million, turned down by Stoke City.
And Swansea are also declining to comment on Danny Graham's situation amid mounting speculation that he will join Sunderland this month.
Swansea sources have indicated the club have received more than one bid for last season's 14-goal top-scorer after it emerged that the Black Cats have made a formal offer. And last night there were reports that Norwich had also tabled a £5 million bid for the former Watford man.
Stoke boss Tony Pulis, meantime, was also staying tight-lipped over Jones — but once again he would not rule out the prospect of the targetman leaving the Britannia this month. Stoke are thought to be looking for a fee of around £4.5 million for Jones, who cost a then club-record £8 million when he joined them from Sunderland two-and-a-half years ago.
And Pulis will also want to have a replacement in the bag before he sanctions Jones's move to Wales.
If Swansea get their man, it seems increasingly likely that Graham will join Sunderland. There are strong suggestions that he is keen on a return to his native North East having struggled for game-time under Michael Laudrup.
But it is understood a number of clubs have registered an interest in Graham, with Queens Park Rangers and Reading also thought to be monitoring the situation.
Sunderland appear confident they will get Graham, though, given that Martin O'Neill has severed ties with one striker — Louis Saha — already this week and is also poised to sell Fraizer Campbell to Cardiff City.
But Jenkins has refused to be drawn on Swansea's position on either Jones or Graham, saying: "I'm not adding to the speculation that is already out there.
"There's enough speculation going on so I am not going to comment on any of it. I don't see why I should."
Pulis was equally cagey ahead of Stoke's trip to Swansea, though all the indications are that Jones will lead the line for the Potters this weekend despite the fact that he could soon be heading to Wales on a permanent basis.
"If Kenwyne goes before the end of the window then I will talk about him, and if he doesn't I will talk about him," Pulis said.
Stoke are renowned for doing deals late in the transfer window, and it may be that Swansea have to stay patient.
"I am looking to bring a couple in, but it will not be until the back end of the month because that's when you get the best deals," Pulis added.
While Jones may spearhead Stoke tomorrow, Graham is likely to begin up front for Swansea unless Michu is pushed further forward having started behind the striker at Everton last weekend.
Laudrup is expected to make a host of changes to the side which lost to Arsenal in the FA Cup on Wednesday night, with Angel Rangel, Ben Davies, Ashley Williams, Pablo Hernandez and Michu all likely to return.