Stoke City boss Mark Hughes has ruled out making a move for Burnley’s Michael Keane, but says there are ‘opportunities’ to bring in new signings this month.
The Potters had reportedly bid £7m for Keane, who has impressed for the Championship side as they bid to return to the Premier League at the first time of asking.
Hughes, however, has denied having any interest in the former Manchester United defender, telling reporters: “I’m not quite sure where that’s come from. My understanding is that is not true.”
West Brom’s in-demand striker Saido Berahino has been linked with a switch to the Britannia Stadium, along with Southampton’s Shane Long and Porto midfielder Giannelli Imbula.
Despite growing speculation, Hughes would not be drawn on the club’s chances of signing all three players and says they will remain patient in the remaining days of the transfer window.
“All good players, all at good clubs, and the clubs they are at will probably feel they want to keep them there,” he said.
“It is inappropriate for me to talk about individual players, other than to say we’re in the market for good players.
“We are actively looking. We think there are opportunities if everything falls into place, but there are a lot of factors.
“We never get too ahead of ourselves because we know the potential pitfalls of the transfer process. We just have to be patient.
“If it happens, we’ll be delighted. If we have to bide our time until the summer, so be it.”
Meanwhile, star players Xherdan Shaqiri and Marko Arnautovic are doubtful for this weekend’s trip to Leicester, and Hughes says he will make a late decision on whether the pair will be involved.
“Shaqiri trained on Thursday so we’re hopeful he won’t get a reaction and then I’ll make a decision as to whether he’s ready,” Hughes said. “Obviously he’s anxious to get back in.
“Marko has a slight hamstring problem that we are managing, but we have to be careful with that. We have this big period coming up, so we’ll have to see. He has trained. There’s a little bit of an issue there, but he has carried it for a number of weeks and still played, so he should be okay.