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Town Hoping to Complete Roberts Signing as Webster Move Set to Be Confirmed
Thursday, 28th Jun 2018 10:34

The Blues are hoping to complete the free signing of former Crawley Town winger Jordan Roberts later today, TWTD understands, while Bristol City are expected to confirm Adam Webster’s move to Ashton Gate.

TWTD revealed yesterday that the Blues had made a move for Roberts, 24, who was also interesting Bolton and Hearts.

Webster is set to move to the Robins for an initial £3.5 million fee, which could rise to as much as £8 million after top-ups.

These include appearance milestones which should see the figure quickly rise to £4 million, as well as other clauses including one relating to the Robins reaching the Premier League, while the Blues would also get a cut of the profit on any future sale.

Portsmouth, Webster’s former club, are due 20 per cent of the profit Town have made on the deal agreed when he moved to Portman Road in the summer of 2016.

Webster cost the Blues £700,000 plus Matt Clarke, who is believed to have been valued at £50,000. They will receive an initial £550,000.

According to a report last night, Webster passed his medical yesterday and will sign a four-year deal at Bristol City where he will replace Aden Flint, who has joined Middlesbrough.

Webster made 48 starts and five sub appearances in an injury-hit spell with the Blues, scoring one goal.

Roberts left Crawley at the end of last season having previously been among the players new Blues boss Paul Hurst was chasing during his time at Shrewsbury.

A youth player with Peterborough and Aldershot, Roberts broke into senior football with the Hampshire side, playing in both League Two and the National League during four seasons and making 68 starts and 24 sub appearances, scoring 12 goals. He also won two England C caps, scoring once.

Early on during his stint with the Shots he also had short spells in non-league on loan at Havant and Waterlooville, Tamworth and Bishop’s Stortford before eventually joining Inverness Caledonian Thistle on a permanent basis in 2015.

After one season in the Scottish Premiership - nine starts, four sub appearances and three goals - the Watford-born wideman moved on to Crawley on a free transfer.

During his two seasons at the Checkatrade Stadium Roberts, who is 6ft 1in tall, made 42 starts and 20 sub appearances, scoring 11 goals.

Roberts caught the eye of Blues boss Hurst during his time as Shrews manager and he made an unsuccessful attempt to sign him on deadline day in January.

He eventually left Crawley at the end the season and a week ago was reported to be close to making a return to Scotland to join Hearts having visited the Edinburgh club and been given a tour of Tynecastle and their Oriam training ground. Bolton Wanderers were also said to be keen.

Roberts’s signing is likely to be far from new boss Hurst’s final bit of business before the transfer window closes on August 9th.

With Webster departing, the Blues will need at least one more senior central defender, perhaps two, having already signed Trevoh Chalobah on a season-long loan from Chelsea.

Earlier this week the Blues were linked with a move for Blackpool centre-half Curtis Tilt, while Shrewsbury's Aristote Nsiala has been mentioned in connection with Town on a number of occasions, although his former boss Hurst played down those reports on Monday.

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Millsey added 10:37 - Jun 28

Paulc added 10:44 - Jun 28
This looks pretty good to me, got a good goal/game ratio for a winger. Add that to a hatful of assists i'd be pleased.

Not sure about the Webster situation, never really seen enough of him, but £3.5m - £8m (yeah sure!) for someone unestabished and a history of injury problems probably feels like the right move - as long as we can reinvest the profits!

DanFord added 10:45 - Jun 28
Really good business. Getting up to £8m for a defender that cannot stay fit, having £3.5m in the bank to strengthen the squad and getting an exciting young player sought after by many Championship and League One clubs for free is good business. Hurst knows exactly what he is doing and come August I'd expect a really promising centre half to partner Chambers, some decent wingers and another striker too perhaps. Really excited by the likes of Tilt, Nsiala, Nolan and so on - players we should be linked with.

WebbyWebster added 10:45 - Jun 28
Can't really complain with a free, having been at a league 2 club I can't imagine his wages are too high either

Guthrum added 10:53 - Jun 28
Have we gazumped Hearts for a player, then? Not bad going.

CalneBlue added 10:55 - Jun 28
Happy enough with this if the Webster money can be reinvested (a rather big if based on Evans' track record). At least these deals are being made quickly which is a refreshing change from the MM era. Roberts has an impressive goals to games ratio for a winger albeit at a lower level.

MoscowBlueMule added 10:55 - Jun 28
The Webster move is outragious. Shows no intent. Until MM starts to invest in ITFC and i'm not talking a little seed capital to cover running costs, we are going no where, except league 1.

A promotion winning team should be built round players like Adam.

I wonder whether PH had a say in this????

My_Left_Foot added 10:55 - Jun 28
Such an impressive pedigree - Aldershot, Havant and Waterlooville, Tamworth, Bishop’s Stortford and Inverness Caledonian Thistle.

Hope he steps up.

parkinshair added 10:57 - Jun 28
No problems with this. I know nothing about him but clearly Hurst rates him as has tried to get him before and will have seen him in action a lot more than us. He has to put his stamp on the squad and there will be comings and goings. Webster is going for any number of reasons be it he doesn't buy into the Hurst era, he wants to move to the area, who knows? You can't instantly blame Marcus Evans for his departure. Bristol just sold Flint, it happens. It's a new era, let's start acting like a united front, fans, players, manager, owner and keep the toys in the pram for once.

CBlue added 10:58 - Jun 28

essextractorboy93 added 11:00 - Jun 28
Hurst knows the lower leagues and will know the players who can step up and have potential. Signing lower league players who have a point to prove is what we should be doing. Exciting times ahead! COYB

TheJam added 11:01 - Jun 28
Ask Spurs the price of CCV

DanFord added 11:01 - Jun 28

You want to build a promotion winning team around a defender that cannot stay fit? With what money exactly? Selling Webster gives us funds to actually build the team. Also Hurst is known for being defensively sound, something McCarthy wasn't for years. Perhaps he doesn't actually think Webster is that good and feels we can partner Chambers with a new signing for a fraction of the Webster fee. You really don't think Hurst had a say? He's got Evans to fork out for Spain rather than keeping a booking in Ireland already paid for. I very much doubt Evans is going to interfere with Hurst's plans for the squad within a fortnight of him arriving, having trusted Hurst so much to be the man to lead us forward that he waited months to get him.

BeattiesBackPocket added 11:05 - Jun 28
Refreshing to see business getting done earlier! Looks like he has a decent free kick taker as well something we have been struggling with until may Waghorn last season.

chicoazul added 11:19 - Jun 28
Lads i'm just here to say LOOOOOL to anyone who thinks Hurst will get the Webster monies to spend on fees.

bluearmy78 added 11:54 - Jun 28
@DanFord absolutely spot on mate with your post 👍 I think the signing of Roberts is a great bit of buisness, from the video I have watched he loves to take on a player, has a wand of a left foot & his delivery looks first class! As for playing for lower league clubs who cares, the boy has been learning his trade & hopefully by joining us he’ll become the complete article. Can see Garner getting on the end of his crosses &hopefully another big hitman! Think Paul Hurst will also reveal another few gems, I think he’s a breath of fresh air and for me a great appointment, COYB!

wilnisfan added 12:03 - Jun 28
I can see what Hurst sees in him. Hard to know if he can step up to the pace and level of marking at this level but the fact that he is eager to get into the box and confident to shoot on sight with either left OR right foot will not change. Also his set pieces will be useful.

If he is planning to use wingers who are more like inside forwards like Salah, this could be a good signing to fit into that pattern.

hampstead_blue added 12:06 - Jun 28
Good for us, good for Pompey, and good for Webster.

I work in Bristol now and have a Brizzle fan opposite me. He's not a fan of the current manager but it will be interesting to hear his views on this.

Len_Brennan added 12:35 - Jun 28
Phil: Please tell me the speculated fee for Matt Clark in the Webster deal is a typo.

arc added 12:52 - Jun 28
I was depressed on reading this story at the thought that Bristol City are now a "bigger club" than us. Well, their average attendance was 4,500+ higher than ours last season—

Time to turn things round! :-)

chorltonskylineblue added 13:18 - Jun 28
I'm disappointed about Webster going as it's been a long while since we had a decent ball-playing centre back, although I think the defensive side of his game still needs work, particularly for balls over the top.

That said, it's a new start under Paul Hurst and I back his judgement to build a new squad in line with his views. With no great cash input from ME for transfers, I guess something had to give.

chicoazul added 13:25 - Jun 28
I am utterly amazed that people are saying stuff like "I trust Paul's judgement" as if he has done anything at all to earn anyone's trust yet. Just be honest about it and say "I am giving our new Manager the benefit of the doubt".

Steve_ITFC_Sweden added 13:36 - Jun 28
We are not getting all that much for Webster really: £3.5m to start, less whatever we paid for him in the first place (with the Clarke figure also factored in), less 20% of the remaining profit because we owe Pompey. Talk of £8m "if promoted" is pie in the sky. Does anyone have Bristol City as PL promotion successfuls next season? Perhaps we'll get a little more (another £500,000-ish?) if Webster plays x number of games, presumably minus the 20% again. Having said all that, I'm not necessarily against the sale if we can bring in some good players from the lower leagues. Just saying, we haven't got all that rich by selling Webster.

RoyalAscotBlue added 13:42 - Jun 28
Thanks for video clip CBlue. He looks like quite promising. Could be a gem of a player on a free.

With regards to the Webster deal I doubt that PH had any say in it at all? I expect that ME was the only person involved in the decision. If PH is to be given any leeway in the transfer market then a sale had to be made... I would rather see a potentially good player go (Webster) than our lynchpin (Bart). Hopefully, PH has the low down on who we we can pinch from the lower divisions to fill the gap. I’m definitely all for giving him the benefit of the doubt.

NBVJohn added 13:50 - Jun 28
Whilst I appreciate the more positive stream of comments of late, this development is a clear indicator that only the manager has changed and not the overall club strategy.

£4m player leaves, a free transfer comes in. The positive is that he's on a 2 year contract, not a ridiculous short term end of the season job.

From hearing ME's comments previously this is not a complete surprise, but Webster fitted at least a couple of our 5 point plan criteria areas. The delivery of this plan is critical to our club, and in this respect, this is a negative step.

The very best of luck to both players - I hope this works out well for all concerned.


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