Crystal Palace’s failed bid for Flynn Downes was ‘nowhere near the club’s valuation’, Ipswich Town’s general manager of football operations Dan O’Neill has told the East Anglian Daily Times.
With Palace making a concerted effort to inject some youth into one of the oldest squads in the top flight of English football, the 21-year-old central midfielder has emerged as a key part of their recruitment plans.
Roy Hodgson’s Eagles have already snapped up Football League starlets Nathan Ferguson and Eberechi Eze this summer, although they will have to step up their interest if they are to make Downes signing number three.
As pointed out by the Standard, Ipswich want £4 million for their homegrown play-maker.
Palace, thus far, have only offered £2 million.
The chance to play Premier League football understandably appeals to Downes but, as O’Neill points out, Ipswich are not just going to hand over their prized asset.
“We have received two bids for Flynn over the last week or two but they are nowhere near the club’s valuation,” O’Neill says. “Marcus (Evans, Ipswich owner] rejected them straightaway.
“Every player strives to play at the highest level and Flynn is no different. We fully understand why a move to the Premier League would appeal to him but until the club receives an offer that meets our valuation there is no decision to make.
“We want to keep Flynn here because he is seen as a key part of our plans.
“Flynn understands the situation and is just getting on with his football. He’s been here 10 years, come through the academy and is now a first-team regular and, in all that time, he has been fully committed to the club.
“While he’s here, it will always be that way because that’s the sort of person he is.”
A technically gifted attacking midfielder who was described as the ‘best in the league’ by Tractor Boys boss Paul Lambert, the Standard adds that Downes handed in a transfer request on Tuesday as he looks to seize an opportunity to prove himself in the top flight.
Crystal Palace’s record signings
Christian Benteke – £27 million
Mamadou Sakho – £22 million
Eberechi Eze – £19.5 million
Patrick van Aanholt – £14 million
Andros Townsend – £13 million