Leeds United: Evans admits Lafferty interest

NORWICH City striker Kyle Lafferty has gained the interest of Leeds United head coach Steve Evans who has called Canaries boss Alex Neil to check the striker’s availability.
Northern Ireland's Kyle Lafferty is a loan target of Leeds United.Northern Ireland's Kyle Lafferty is a loan target of Leeds United.
Northern Ireland's Kyle Lafferty is a loan target of Leeds United.

Evans admitted he had called to enquire about “one or two players” - potentially suggesting there was also interest in fellow rumoured Norwich target and forward Lewis Grabban.

Northern Ireland international Lafferty was wanted by chairman Massimo Cellino in the summer but no approach was made by then head coach Uwe Rosler.

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However, Lafferty announced this week that he would be willing to leave the Canaries in order to experience first team football ahead of his Euro 2016 assignment with Northern Ireland and Evans confirmed he is potentially interested in bringing the 28-year-old to Elland Road.

Lafferty is good friends with United’s fellow Northern Ireland international winger Stuart Dallas and Evans said of Lafferty: “I don’t know Kyle Lafferty but I didn’t like him when he played for Glasgow Rangers because he always gave Glasgow Celtic a problem.

“And I didn’t like him last season when he came on and changed the game against Rotherham.

“He’s good friends with Stuart (Dallas), he’s done absolutely terrifically well for Northern Ireland and I’ve placed a call into Alex Neil just to ask what the situation is.

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“It was just a call to ask about the availability of one or two players that Alex has.

“And Alex Neil I know is like myself, he’s a grafter. Alex is a friend and when he gets a minute and a decision he will call me.

“Lafferty is a good player but does it mean we can bring him to Elland Road and is he the first person we want in the door?

“They are all questions that will remain private but Kyle Lafferty is a lad that whatever happens and I am being totally neutral here as I have never spoken to the kid but he needs to be playing first team football if he’s going to the Euros in the summer.”

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Evans also insisted Leeds still remain hopeful of signing defensive midfielder Liam Bridcutt on loan, nearly two weeks after initially approaching his parent club Sunderland.

Cardiff City and Reading are also said to be interested in the 26-year-old but Evans said: “I know people are still talking and I know for a fact that the president was talking to the representatives of Liam last night when I was with him over dinner.

“To sign good players there’s a lot things that have to be ticked and it’s not just a case of ringing up Sunderland and asking for a player and everything’s hunky-dory and we can do it in ten minutes.

“It’s no hidden secret that the better players are harder to get.”