Since the opening of the transfer window, Robbie Brady has become the subject of a speculated bidding war. Expected to leave last summer, the Norwich City man was one of Ireland’s star performers at Euro 2016.
The Irish Independent have linked Brady with moves to Leicester City, West Ham United and Crystal Palace while Newcastle-based outlet Chronicle Live have linked the Baldoyle man with Newcastle and Brighton.
With a move looking likely, we assess the different options that Brady has at present.
Brady’s link with the Premier League champions has been ongoing since the summer. With at least one round of Champions League football guaranteed, Brady may want to take his career to the next level.
However, given Leicester’s struggles this season, a relegation battle could also be on the cards with Brady the victim of two consecutive relegations.
With Claudio Ranieri deploying a direct game with quick wingers given a licence to cut inside, the Dubliner could benefit from playing under the ‘Tinkerman’.
Verdict: Champions League experience would be fantastic.
West Ham United
Following their move to the London Stadium, the Hammers have struggled following an impressive 2015/16 season. West Ham are well stocked at left-back but an opening on the wing could be a possibility under Slavan Bilic.
With Irish teammate Darren Randolph now the number one goalkeeper at West Ham, Brady would add to what has always been a small Irish contingent in west London. With Simone Zaza expected to end his loan spell, the number 11 shirt could be Brady’s for the taking too.
Verdict: An excellent move but will have to fight for his place.
Sam Allardyce has expressed an interest in Brady. With right-footed Joel Ward Palace’s first choice left-back, Big Sam may want to add an attacking left-footed full-back to compliment his pacy wingers.
With Andros Townsend struggling for form this season and Wilfried Zaha again lacking consistency, Brady would provide stiff competition for Palace’s wide men. Unfortunately, a move to Selhurst Park would most likely mean another potential relegation fight.
Verdict: Potential of a third consecutive relegation.
Despite a recent dip in form, Newcastle are heavily tipped to secure a comfortable move to the Premier League. With more stability looking likely under Rafa Benitez, this move could signal a prolonged Premier League career with the Magpies for Brady.
Paul Dummett is Newcastle’s first choice left-back but lacks the same attacking qualities or set-piece delivery that Brady would offer. With Benitez fond of rotating his attacking players, Brady could end up playing further up field should he move to St. James’ Park.
Verdict: Probably the best option.
Brighton & Hove Albion
For yet another season, the Seagulls look like serious promotion candidates. However, this term they look particularly dominant and play an attractive brand of football under Chris Hughton. Playing under the former Irish fullback could be a tempting factor for Brady, who may want to help Brighton’s title tilt.
With talented wingers like Anthony Knockaert, Jiri Skalek and Solly March all similar wingers to Brady, Hughton may see him as the perfect fit for his team. Brady could join Irishmen Shane Duffy and Richie Towell at The Amex.
Verdict: A great prospect to play in an attractive system and challenge for promotion.
Liverpool (wild card)
A highly unlikely move but one suggested by Ireland legend John Aldridge back in August of 2016 following the 24-year-old’s Euros campaign.
Brady could provide some quality at left-back with his ability from set-pieces but James Milner is having a surprisingly terrific season in an unfamiliar position. A possibility in years to come but just a dream for now.
Verdict: Would be a good move for both sides but a long shot.
Nick Menezes, Pundit Arena