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Reading FC Scout Northern Irish Hotshot Striker, But He Won’t Be Signing

Paul Smyth’s manager at Linfield has rebuffed the speculation.

Linfield v Celtic - UEFA Champions League Qualifying Second Round: First Leg Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images

Jaap Stam has publicly admitted Reading’s need for a striker and scouts were at the luxuriously sounding Bangor Fuels Arena on Tuesday night to watch Linfield’s Paul Smyth, although his manager has dismissed any chance of a deal.

At 19, Smyth has banged in 13 goals across 21 games and there seem to be fears that the Northern Irish Under-21 international will be plucked by a Championship team before the window is out.

However, after Belfast local news reported on Reading scouts taking in Linfield’s 2-0 win over Ards, coach David Healy (remember him?) reassured his team’s fans.

"Paul Smyth will be a Linfield player on Saturday when we play Dungannon,” Healy told Belftast Telegraph.

“He will be frustrated tonight because he was denied a few times but I've no doubt he will start taking those chances."

Any Other Business

Stam confirmed to BBC Berkshire after the Villa win that he’s after a defender, midfielder and a striker before the window is out. As ever, no concrete names have emerged with Shane Long not coming back to Berkshire.

Elsewhere, the Sone Aluko saga rumbles on in the background.

We’ll have to keep this one in the corner of our eye for now, in case in turns into a Peter Odemwingie/Bushwatch deadline day crossover epic.