Published: 02/12/2017 09:00 - Updated: 30/11/2017 16:03

Caley Thistle boss John Roberston searching for new striker

Written byKenny MacDonald

John Robertson praised John Baird's work-rate. Picture: Ken Macpherson.
John Robertson is looking to boost his striking options. Picture: Ken Macpherson.

 

INVERNESS Caley manager John Robertson revealed he is hunting a new striker.

He wants to add to his frontline for New Year while shedding several players who are coming to the end of their contracts.

The Caley Jags currently have John Baird and George Oakley as out-and-out strikers, while Connor Bell is deployed in a wide role and Felitciano Zschusschen has spent the majority of the season out injured.

“I still think we need to bring in another striker, potentially, firepower-wise," said Robertson. “Connor Bell is chipping away, John Baird got on the goal trail the other day, but we need more. We need a 15-20 goal striker.

“Now, on our budget, that is going to be very difficult. It may well be somebody on loan or somebody who has fallen from favour at another club.

“But you have to persuade them to come, do the deal for them to come and, more importantly, it has to be within the financial boundaries we have set.     

“We can’t go and get someone who is being paid £1500 to £2000 a week or even £1000 a week. That is way beyond our means.

“So we have to move one or two players on and try to entice somebody to come maybe on a short-term deal, because the strikers we have are doing pretty well."

“Despite some bemoaning the fact we don’t have an out-and-out striker scoring goals like St Mirren’s Gavin Reilly and people like that, we have spread the goals throughout the team.

“Only Coll Donaldson in defence and Joe Chalmers in midfield haven’t scored, while all the forwards apart from Jake Mulraney have hit the net. While it would be great to have someone sitting on 12-15 goals, if you add everybody up that’s not been as bad as it could have been.

“But we are looking to move two or three out. Two or three will go out naturally with contracts up on January 7.”

The Caley Thistle boss added that David Raven rejected a six-month extension to his current deal - on reduced terms - and will leave the club.

“Whilst we are disappointed, we understand his reasons," said Robertson. “He is on the team on merit, on form, but we have to be practical. We couldn’t extend on the wage David is on at the moment.

“We spoke with David way back and said it would help us to move himself and Owain Fon Williams on. There was nothing that interested David at the time.

“Once the window shut, I assured him he would he would be picked on form and he assured me his attitude wouldn’t change. He has come into the team and his attitude has been great.

David Raven will leave when his contract expires in January. Picture: Ken Macpherson.
David Raven turned down a contract extension. Picture: Ken Macpherson.

 

“He earned the opportunity for his contract to be extended but he just felt he couldn’t do it. His wage would still have had him earning more than most of his team-mates, but it didn’t work for him.

“It is unfortunate, but David will stay in the team until his contract runs out.”

Robertson added that he will not be getting carried away with his side's current form.

"I am not going to make outrageous targets of winning promotion or getting to the play-offs. The next two target is to get above Morton," he said.

“Queens have been under the radar and no one had spoken about them for promotion or play-offs and they sit just one below Dunfermline.

“It would be particularly good to win because it would allow us to come within three points of them.

“Our next target is Morton and try to get above them. It is baby steps. Then hopefully we can get ourselves into position in February when suddenly you are within striking distance of the play-off places.”

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