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Lennie Lawrence Targets European Players!!

By: Bill Osborne
Date: 12/06/2001

GRIMBY TOWN Town boss Lennie Lawrence revealed today that he is seeking foreign players to help build a team capable of achieving a mid-table or better finish next season. He is looking to use British and European season loans to fulfil his aim.

Revealing his plans to the Grimsby Telegraph he said, "We've got a list of players from this country and we've also got three or four under 23s from Europe. "They're looking good and we're maybe looking at loaning them for the season."

Lawrence who admitted last year that bringing in loan players from abroad was something he'd never tried before said the Mariners scouts watched the recent Under-21 tournament in Toulon looking for cheap young talent.

Reporting that he has already visited FC Copenhagen ahead of the summer tour to Sweden, which will include a match against Roy Hodgson's Danish side the GET reported that he had been keeping a close eye on several of his players - including striker Claus Nielsen.

Unfortunately Nielsen retired from the game in January after unsuccessfully undergoing triple surgery on a persistent back problem.

Lawrence is looking for a left-winger before the start of the season, which will more than likely be a Bosman signing having spent £360,000 on two players.

"...The other thing that I need is a striker..."

"It's what I can do. Stuart Campbell was the most important target and the priority is now wide left. I'm hoping by the time I set foot back in Grimsby in July that virtually everybody will be resolved,"

Explaining his Euro targets Lawrence said: "They're not all left wingers, they're from all positions. The other thing I need is a striker. It depends on what Peter [Handyside] does as to whether I need to get a centre back."

In an exclusive interview to www.planetfootball.com, Lawrence said "We took David Nielsen on-loan from Copenhagen last season and (FC Copenhagen manager) Roy Hodgson's a close personal friend of mine - that's where it will have come from." referring to the Claus Nielsen link

"I went over to watch a game a couple of weeks ago and we do have an interest in a few young Danish players including one or two of Copenhagen's.

"Obviously we're not going to be able to get their first-choice players though, and to be honest it's too early to be naming names."

Planet Football also muted that Mads Westh's name figures highly on his shopping-list stating "The 19-year-old's professional career got off to a promising start under the tutilege of Hodgson, although he found first-team opportunities limited in last season's championship-winning side, and it is believed that the former Blackburn boss is keen to farm him out in order that he can gain more experience."



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