Bristol Rovers: Chris Zebroski poised to complete Cheltenham Town switch
BRISTOL Rovers striker Chris Zebroski is expected to complete a move to League Two rivals Cheltenham Town today.
Zebroski was yesterday absent from training as negotiations over a fee for the 25-year-old continued between the two clubs.
A deal should be concluded today, which will see Cheltenham Town boss Mark Yates get his man after having an approach rebuffed for the forward during the last January transfer window.
Zebroski only arrived at the Memorial Stadium last summer having followed former boss Paul Buckle from Torquay United – but was unable to put together a run of consistent form in a spell that saw him play 39 times and score three goals.
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It is believed that Cheltenham first approached Rovers about the possibility of signing Zebroski three weeks ago – but were told at that time that the player was unavailable.
Rovers boss Mark McGhee, however, has since recruited former Bristol City striker David Clarkson and is in the market for another new face up front, which makes Zebroski, who has not featured in either of Rovers last two pre-season games, surplus to requirements.
Negotiations with Middlesbrough, meanwhile, were still continuing last night over the departure of Mustapha Carayol.
The Gambian-born wideman is expected to complete a £500,000 move to the Riverside this week and McGhee said: “There are a few details still to be finalise but I would expect the deal to go through.
“Muzzy was a good servant to the club in the year that he was here and leaves with our best wishes. It was his decision to leave and we have to respect his wishes to play at a higher level.”
Clarkson, meanwhile, was officially confirmed as a Rovers player yesterday after passing a medical. The former Bristol City striker, pictured, who has penned a two-year deal, says that McGhee played a big part in persuading him to drop from The Championship to League Two.
“I’m glad to have got it all sorted,” said Clarkson. “I’ve worked with the gaffer before at Motherwell and that has played a major part in my decision. I really enjoyed working with him during that time and I think he brought the best out of me as a player. He has a great knowledge of the game and is a fantastic man-manager.
“I also get a chance to stay in a lovely part of the world and join a club that is going places, which I’m excited to be a part of.”
McGhee completed a deal for former Dundee United defender Garry Kenneth yesterday and is hopeful of signing German triallist Fabian Broghammer on Thursday.
He also hinted that there could still be a further two additions before the start of the season on August 14. One of those is expected to be an experienced goalkeeper on a short-term deal to act as cover for Scott Bevan, who is expected to at least miss the opening month of the campaign with a wrist injury.
That has left McGhee with youngster Conor Gough as his only other realistic option – but the 19-year-old has only one senior appearance under his belt and the manager said: He added: “Conor has done well for us in pre-season. He’s a young boy and we’re delighted to be giving him a bit of experience in these warm-up games. Ultimately, however, we need someone with a bit more experience to start the season.”
McGhee was still waiting for news on midfielder Matthew Lund, who has returned to parent club Stoke City for treatment on a troublesome Achilles injury. Rovers are understood to have the option of pulling out of a proposed six-month loan deal for the midfielder if the injury is considered serious.
McGhee takes his side to Blue Square Premier side Tamworth (7.45pm) tonight.