Football

Coventry boss in clear-the-air talks with stopper

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Coventry manager Aidy Boothroyd has held clear-the-air talks with Keiren Westwood but has admitted the Republic of Ireland international is unlikely to sign a new contract.

Goalkeeper Westwood, out of contract next summer, was dropped for the club's previous npower Championship clash against Millwall having been told to either sign a new deal or sit in the stands.

The highly sought-after 25-year-old responded in midweek by insisting he would not be bullied into putting pen to paper in what became an increasingly public war of words.

But the pair have met on Thursday to draw a line under the issue, after which Boothroyd said: "We've have a good chat this morning, a clear-the-air chat. Keiren has come out and said how he feels and I have total respect for that - I won't be hitting him with a big stick."

He added: "Every player has a right to run down their contract, I would love him to stay. It is his right and, as he said in the press, he's going to give 100% up until the end of his contract, and I trust him that he'll do that."

Westwood - who has never said he wants to leave - stressed his full commitment to City, adding: "It's got very messy these last few weeks and it's not what I've wanted, and I'm not sure it's what the gaffer wants.

"There's no point going back and forth arguing; we want to do what's best for the club."

However, how long he stays at the Ricoh Arena remains to be seen, with chairman Ray Ranson in June insisting "he won't be leaving this club for nothing, that's for certain", meaning a January bidding war by Barclays Premier League clubs remains the likely outcome.

On a busy day of negotiations at the club's Ryton training ground, Boothroyd also revealed he is on the verge of concluding deals for free agent Marlon King and Bolton winger Danny Ward ahead of Saturday's derby clash against Leicester.

Highly-rated Bolton youngster Ward, who enjoyed a successful loan spell at Swindon last season, is likely to conclude a loan deal which will run until January.

"The fact Adam Johnson and Ashley Young did so well at Watford, sometimes I can point to that," added Boothroyd. "I think Danny reminds me a lot of Adam, in fact slightly bigger physically and perhaps could be a better player."

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Topics:
Football
Championship
Keiren Westwood
Coventry City

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