DEARDEN: `NO OFFER FOR STAR DEFENDER`
DEARDEN: 'NO OFFER FOR STAR DEFENDER'
Evening Post, 26 May 2007
Mansfield boss Billy Dearden today said he has received no firm offer for out-of-contract defender Alex John-Baptiste.
Reports in the north-east claim Hartlepool manager Danny Wilson has tabled a bid for the 21-year old.
Norwich City and Nottingham Forest have also been linked with John-Baptiste, who has played more than 150 games for the Stags.
But Dearden says he has had no contact from Wilson, or any other club, about his prize asset.
"Danny Wilson has not spoken to me about Bap, although I do know he likes him as a player," said Dearden.
"If there has been a bid for him it will have gone through the chairman or chief executive, not through me.
"I haven't spoken to Bap for a while but I expect I will to see what he intends to do. I still want to keep him here.
"But you can't keep waiting for players forever."
The Stags have yet to make a signing or get answers from players over contract offers.
But Dearden reckons there will be plenty of activity over the next week.
"Like any other manager, I want to get players signed up as soon as possible, but it doesn't always fall into place exactly as you'd expect.
"But I would expect things to start happening soon."
Mansfield chairman James Derry said: "We have had no official offer for Alex John-Baptiste, although Hartlepool have intimated they are interested in him.
"There has been no interest from Norwich City. He has said he has not talked to them."
McIntosh set for Stags deal
Veteran centrehalf McIntosh was released by Huddersfield last week having failed to impress new boss Andy Ritchie.
It hasn't proved to be a good season for McIntosh, loaned out to Town early in the campaign he soon found himself back in West Yorkshire with Nick Fenton arrived at the club.
Back with the Terriers McIntosh failed to hold down a first team place both under Peter Jackson and then Ritchie before his release.
However he appears to have a fan in Stags boss Billy Dearden who is keen to sign up the Scot as he faces losing defenders of his own.
The highly rated Alex-John Baptiste looks set to leave the club this summer with Norwich showing strong interest whilst Jon-Olay Hjelde has been released by the club.
Dearden is also interested in McIntosh's former Huddersfield team-mate John McAliskey as the prepare for the new season.
Latest | May 2007