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Butland move may have hit a snag
Albion's hopes of landing Jack Butland on loan from Premier League Stoke City to solve the goalkeeping vacancy have hit a snag.
They are looking elsewhere for Tomasz Kuszczak’s replacement, as Butland is unlikely to be available until September.
The Argus revealed a week ago the Seagulls’ interest in taking England under-21 international Butland on loan for the season after former No. 1 Kuszczak was released in May.
Butland has plenty of Championship experience following a loan-back spell with former club Birmingham and temporary stints also with Barnsley and Leeds.
Albion are a more attractive proposition with their track record of reaching the play-offs but the timing of another temporary move for Butland away from the Britannia Stadium is dependent on the future of Asmir Begovic, pictured.
Stoke’s highly-rated Bosnian No. 1 continues to be the subject of transfer speculation, with Real Madrid heading the queue.
A Stoke insider has told The Argus Butland, third choice at the Potteries club behind experienced Dane Thomas Sorensen, will not be going anywhere until Begovic’s future is resolved.
Albion launch their Championship campaign at home to Sheffield Wednesday on August 9 – three weeks before the transfer window closes.
They can ill-afford to wait on Butland, with boss Sami Hyypia especially eager to sign both a goalkeeper and central defender following Matt Upson’s move to Leicester.
Sorensen’s fellow countryman Casper Ankergren, retained by Albion on a new one-year deal, and England under-19 prospect Christian Walton are likely to share the gloves in the opening pre-season friendly at Lewes today.
Chairman Tony Bloom is bullish about a competitive squad being in place for Hyypia’s first season at the helm.
Albion are expected to make as many as seven signings by next month to bring the squad back up to strength.
Bloom said: “David (Burke, head of football), myself and he (Hyypia) are talking regularly on transfer targets and we will be making progress with those over the next few weeks.
“We are well prepared with transfer targets but obviously with a new manager it takes a little bit more time. We need Sami’s input.
“Sami needs to watch quite a few games so it takes a little bit longer and also the World Cup does mean that player signings and transfers always happen later in the summer.
“I’m extremely confident we will bring in the right players. We can bring in a few players tomorrow.
“We just want to bring in the best players we can with the budget we’ve got and I’m confident for the start of the season we’ll have a very competitive squad.”
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