Gary Rowett thinks Birmingham City can win the battle for Che Adams’ heart and mind after submitting another offer for the Sheffield United striker.
Adams was the subject of a failed bid from St Andrews last week but sources in the Midlands last night confirmed Rowett’s employers have returned with an improved package potentially worth £1.7 million.
Although that is thought to contain an estimated £400,000 worth of add-on payments, Rowett believes United could be persuaded to do business if the youngster expresses a desire to move.
Unless an agreement is reached, Adams could be named in the United squad which visits Handsworth Parramore this evening.
Chris Wilder, the United manager, recently admitted it can be difficult to fend off interest from Championship and Premier League clubs if they set their hearts on signing a player.
But, highlighting the Blades’ protracted negotiations with Bury before capturing centre-forward Leon Clarke, he warned United shouldn’t be viewed as a soft touch in the transfer market.
“In the negotiations and the signings we’ve done, all the way through we’ve taken our time and not rolled over,” Wilder said.
“The prices we’ve paid have been reasonable. We’ve not given out stupid contracts either. I think we’ve done some good business.”
United’s decision to refuse City’s opening offer has prompted manager Rowett to explore other options in the transfer market.
Norwich City’s Ricky van Wolfswinkel was originally an alternative should his bid for Adams stall.
Talks about recruiting the Dutchman on a season-long loan took place, but the striker last night made a move to his homeland joining Vitesse Arnhem for an undisclosed fee. In spite of looking at other players, Rowett still views Adams as a realistic target.
Meanwhile, tickets for tonight’s match at Worksop are available on the gate, priced £6 and £3. The game, United’s final first-team friendly before next weekend’s League One opener against Bolton Wanderers, kicks off at 7.45pm.