sport

Coates denies Lescott move

Stoke City chairman Peter Coates claims the club have not made contact with Joleon Lescott as speculation over the defender’s future mounts.

understand the free agent, released by Premier League champions Manchester City, is close to agreeing personal terms with Hull City.

However, reports have claimed Stoke manager Mark Hughes, who signed Lescott for City in 2009, remains a fan of the centre-back and could make a late bid to hijack his move to the KC Stadium.

Coates insists the Potters have made no move to sign the 31-year-old, but admits that could all change in the fast-paced summer transfer window.

"There is nothing happening at the moment on that one," Coates told the Stoke Sentinel. "But that is not to say nothing will happen.

"We are not in talks with Joleon Lescott, but things can change quickly at this time of year."

Stoke are not short of defensive options with captain Ryan Shawcross, Marc Wilson, Geoff Cameron and the fit-again Robert Huth all jostling for starting positions.

While admitting defence is not an area of concern, the Stoke chairman reiterated their desire to sign Oussama Assaidi from Liverpool following his season-long loan at the Britannia Stadium.

"We are not short of centre-halves and we have never seen that area as a priority this summer,\" Coates claimed.

"We do have a serious interest [in Assaidi], but we have other irons in the fire to make sure we have got the right balance in that area."