Republic of Ireland striker Shane Long’s future is in doubt after contract renewals at West Bromwich Albion have stalled, writes Sky
Long was on the verge of joining Hull City on transfer deadline day, but has found himself in favour again at the Hawthorns under Steve Clarke.
The 26-year-old has had a tough start to the season after suffering an injury early in the campaign, but the striker is now concentrating on scoring more goals after netting his first of the 2013-14 season last weekend against Chelsea.
“I have always been wanted there. The gaffer said he wants me, I am a big part of his plans and I enjoy playing for him as well.
“I am just concentrating on my football at West Brom and if a new contract doesn’t get sorted out, then I’ll have to look at pastures new.
“But at the moment, I am letting that take care of itself.”
Despite struggling to cement a first-team place this season following the injury troubles, Long is adamant he must remain in the side after getting off the mark.
He said: “I picked up an injury after the second or third game of the season and missed out for two or three games, and then the lads were flying, so it was hard to get back into the side.
“But I got the nod against Crystal Palace and then again against Chelsea, and I feel like I am playing well and hopefully I can keep my place in there.
“You can do so well on the pitch but it’s goals which keep you on there, so I am trying to tighten up on that and hopefully I can keep scoring between now and the end of the season.”
Long came off the bench on Friday for the Republic of Ireland to score the third goal during Martin O’Neills first game in charge of the national side.
The former Reading striker scored eight goals in his previous two consecutive seasons for the Baggies, but may find himself elsewhere if the current contract negotiations are not finalised.
See what the expert tipsters are tipping on OLBG