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SWINDON TOWN: Time for Connell to cut and run?
PAOLO Di Canio has urged Alan Connell to accept the offer of a contract with an unnamed League One club.
The striker, who top scored for Swindon Town with 13 goals last season, did not travel with the squad to their Italian training base on the banks of Lake Garda on Sunday after he was told he would be surplus to Di Canio’s plans for 2012/13.
The Advertiser has learnt that several clubs in League One and League Two have made contact with Town in an effort to secure Connell’s services, but Di Canio has revealed that one particular deal could be completed very quickly – should the former Grimsby frontman agree to a wage cut.
He said: “With Alan, he has to decide. I like him as a professional, as a man I hope he can understand the situation because - in life - a club like Swindon can help you in some way, but you have to help yourself.
“I understand, when you have a contract, maybe you don’t want to lose something. But at 30 or 31, as a protagonist, if a League One team comes to you and we help you move without asking any fee, and this club tells him to reduce the wage the minimum and he has is two years not one.
“I understand at this age you don’t want to lose money, but you have to think you have two years’ contract, not any more one, and you play in League One – the league you deserve because you reached League One and you like.
“We will see because otherwise he should have the chance to straight away move in this club. He’s firm in his position and we will see.”
Di Canio also confirmed that Jonathan Smith, another player he transfer-listed last week, is close to finalising a move away from the County Ground.
Smith is understood to be interesting Oxford, York and Cheltenham – and the Town boss said he may well be the next to exit SN1 after it was announced yesterday that Billy Bodin had agreed terms with Torquay, a transfer that will go through subject to Bodin’s medical at Plainmoor today and that will net Swindon in the region of £70,000 plus add-ons.
“With Jonathan Smith, he speaks at the moment with two clubs and he’s in a good position at the moment but it’s not done yet,” said Di Canio.
“It’s strange, on Saturday and Sunday you don’t work even when there is a transfer going on.
“They switch off the telephone. They are close but nothing is done yet.”