Football: Short set for Blackburn move

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The Independent Online
BLACKBURN ROVERS are poised to sign the Everton centre-back Craig Short for pounds 1.7m - three months after they could have signed him for nothing, writes Alan Nixon.

The Short move was part of a hectic day's transfer activity for Rovers manager Brian Kidd, who looks set to recoup over pounds 1m of that money on transferring the former England international goalkeeper Tim Flowers to Leicester City.

Short, 31, is speaking to Blackburn and wants to match his current pounds 600,000- a-year, three-year contract before signing. However the Blackburn offer is extraordinary as Short was talking to them in May before his previous contract at Goodison ran out. He turned them down to stay in the top flight. If Short had agreed to join Blackburn at that stage he would have been a free agent and they could have saved the money.

Blackburn have also completed the signing of Simon Grayson from Aston Villa in a deal worth an initial pounds 750,000 but possibility rising to pounds 1m based on appearances.

Leicester, meanwhile, have agreed a fee of pounds 1.1m with Blackburn for Flowers, who requested a transfer after losing his place in the side to John Filan. Flowers travelled to the Midlands for talks with the Leicester manager, Martin O'Neill, yesterday.

O'Neill was hoping to complete the deal in time for Flowers to be part of the Leicester party travelling to Greece today for a four-team pre- season tournament.

Blackburn are set to replace Flowers with the experienced Alan Kelly from Sheffield United. He was having a medical last night and will cost the club pounds 650,000 with more to follow if he helps them to promotion.