Wolves want Yorke to increase strike power

Jones hopes Blackburn's out-of-favour forward can bolster his struggling side's chances of keeping their Premiership place
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The Independent Football

Dave Jones hopes to take Dwight Yorke on loan from Blackburn Rovers in an attempt to secure a proven goalscorer for his bottom-of the-table Wolves.

Jones has been given money to spend on a striker to save his side's season and keep them in the lucrative Premier League for another year. The Wolves manager would like to take Yorke on loan, gambling on the expense of his wages against the potential £20m that a second season in the Premiership could be worth.

However, Blackburn would prefer to sell one of their strikers rather than agree to a loan. If Wolves were to take Yorke on a permanent contract and offer him a two-year deal, the cost of that would mean they would struggle to afford a transfer fee.

Jones, who has just signed the Romanian forward Ioan Viorel Ganea for the rest of the season, sees his attack as his main weakness. Kenny Miller has failed to make an impact, Nathan Blake has also struggled, George Ndah has been injured and Dean Sturridge is out of his plans and on loan at Sheffield United.

Yorke is in and out of Graeme Souness's side and could be allowed to move in the transfer window if the Blackburn manager can find a younger and hungrier alternative. The former Manchester United striker has had a mixed season and his move from Old Trafford has never really been a success since his £3m transfer 18 months ago.

Souness dragged Yorke off in the Boxing Day game against Middlesbrough and then replaced him with Andy Cole at Newcastle. It may be a case of who puts in the best bid for one of the former Old Trafford pals this month. Cole has been linked with Middlesbrough, but the cost of signing him would be even greater than Yorke because he has a price on his head and high wages.

But one way or another it now looks like the old Yorke and Cole partnership will be split up in the next few weeks. They have been replaced by the teenager Paul Gallagher as first choice in Souness's side.

Gallagher's rise to the top and his impressive maturity mean that Yorke and Cole are vying for the other position and neither of them has done enough to stake a regular claim. Souness could move for a striker once he gets his priority position of central midfield sorted out. Blackburn are interested in the Leicester City captain, Muzzy Izzet, and hope to do a quick deal.

Izzet wants to hold talks with his manager, Micky Adams, about his future. His contract runs out at the end of the season and the club will find it hard to match his wages again, so they may want to cash in now. But the transfer fee may yet put off Rovers and their rivals for Izzet's signature, Aston Villa.

The cost of the premium on signing Izzet now, while he is still under contract, has to be weighed against what he can bring to either club - and what his loss would do to Leicester.

The Manchester City manager, Kevin Keegan, and his midfielder Eyal Berkovic will have to take a big financial loss to end their feud and see the Israeli player sign for Portsmouth. Keegan has fallen out with the playmaker but will now have to let him go for nothing to make his move to Harry Redknapp's side go through in the next few days.

Berkovic will also have to be prepared to take a big cut on his wages, which are around £30,000-a-week, for relegation-threatened Portsmouth to give him a deal beyond the end of the season.