Peterborough United director of football Barry Fry has dropped a transfer fee warning regarding reported Rangers target Jonson Clarke-Harris.
Clarke-Harris had a stunning 2020/21 campaign with the Posh after joining from Bristol Rovers, scoring 31 League One goals to fire them to automatic promotion.
Fry claimed in March that the Gers had been scouting the powerful forward [Peterborough Telegraph] and a Bristol Live report then credited Rangers and several English clubs, including Sheffield United and West Brom, with interest.
At that stage, it was asserted that he was valued at £5m but Peterborough’s subsequent promotion has likely increased that further.
The Posh stand to make a big profit given that they only paid a reported £1m to bring him in, but Fry has warned that they don’t need to sell and will only do so if the price is right.
“Do I expect bids for Jonson Clarke-Harris? Yes I do,” he said [Daily Record]. “Will they be enough? I don’t know.”
“Because we don’t want to go up to the Championship and be also-rans, we want to go up to the Championship and stay there and progress further, so it’ll have to be a good offer.”
Fry and co are in a strong position ahead of negotiations, given that Clarke-Harris is contracted until 2024.
However, they have a history of cashing in on assets and successfully recruiting cheaper replacements, with Clarke-Harris himself coming in after the sale of Ivan Toney to Brentford, and it’s hard to see a club of that size turning down a multi-million-pound offer should it arrive.
Whether or not Rangers would be prepared to cough up such a substantial fee is a different story.
That could be very much dependent on what happens with the club’s current group of strikers.
Alfredo Morelos, Kemar Roofe, Fashion Sakala, Cedric Itten and Jermain Defoe are all under contract for next season, but if Morelos gets a big-money move away this summer, reinforcements would be required.
The signing of Fashion Sakala has already added extra pace and goalscoring prowess to Steven Gerrard’s options and the Zambia international is already impressing supporters.