Port Vale are working hard to keep hold of on-loan Birmingham City youngster Alex Jones as the winter transfer window approaches.
Jones, 22, has scored ten goals in all competitions so far this season for the Valiants, but his current loan agreement ends in January and he has been linked with moves to Championship clubs in recent weeks.
Assistant Manager Michael Brown has spoken about the club’s tireless efforts to keep the in-form striker at Vale Park.
He said: “We are doing everything we can as a football club to try and make Alex Jones stay here in January.
“We’re speaking to the people concerned. It’s not straightforward when you have a loan.
“Have we got permission to extend that loan? Does the player want to be here? Does the agent want them to be here? Do we turn that into a permanent deal? We have to look at every aspect, but I’m hopeful.
“He thoroughly enjoys it here, he understands what the football club have done for him, and what he’s done for us.
“We should not forget he’s scored some very important goals and done very well. He had to make sacrifices to come here and he’s got his rewards.”
And Brown believes that Port Vale is the right place for Jones at this moment in time, despite the possibility of lucrative offers from other clubs.
Brown said: “I’ve sacrificed money in my career to go and play somewhere I felt was better for me. The danger for him is to move somewhere else for possibly better surroundings, a better league or a better deal financially.
“As a young footballer, I think he needs to play football every week. The one carrot we’ve got at the moment is that he is playing.
“He needs to try and get 30 games under his belt and I think he’s got to look at it that in our squad he’s playing week-in, week-out.
“We are looking all the time to extend that deal whether it is permanent or on-loan.”
Another young prospect at Vale Park linked with a move away is Nathan Smith, but he is happy to stay and hopes that Jones will too.
Smith said: “He’s obviously brought a lot to the team and he does contribute a lot by scoring.
“He has helped us through some tough games and his goals have been vital for the points we’ve gathered and the games we’ve won.
“I’d love for him to stay, and hopefully he does what is best for him, but obviously if he stays it will be a big boost for us and will help us continue to put points on the board.”
Port Vale next play against Northampton Town (3PM K.O.) at Vale Park this Saturday.