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Handyside for WBA?

By: Stephen Bateman
Date: 16/05/2001

WEST BROMWICH ALBION have emerged as firm favourites to sign Grimsby Town defender Peter Handyside during the summer. The Scottish centre-half has been linked with a plethora of clubs ranging from Dundee to Portsmouth, although The Baggies now appear to be heading the race.

The move could well hinge on whether or not Albion secure promotion to the Premiership via the play-offs over the coming months and it is believed that manager Gary Megson is waiting to learn his team's fate before making any forays into the transfer market.

With Larus Sigurdsson's departure from The Hawthorns now looking imminent, it is known that West Brom are currently in the market for a centre-half. It has also been suggested that Handyside impressed the club's coaching staff, which includes ex-Town star Richard O'Kelly, by effectively marking Lee Hughes out of the game during The Mariners' recent 1-0 victory at The Hawthorns.

A source close to the club also suggested that Megson would be interested in signing a player of Handyside's calibre, but stressed that any deal was not likely to be concluded until after the play-offs.

Other clubs to have been linked with the Dumfries-born stopper include Manchester City and Bradford, although it now looks increasingly likely that, barring promotion to the top flight, Handyside is bound for the Black Country.

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