Fulham boss Roy Hodgson has revealed he has no intention of sacrificing David Healy as he continues his summer spending spree — but has paved the way for the Northern Ireland star’s departure if he wanted to leave.
With Everton and England hitman Andrew Johnson close to completing a move to Craven Cottage, Healy’s future was cast into doubt even though the ex-Leeds United hitman has continually insisted he wanted to fight for his place in the side.
With Hodgson adding several strikers to his squad since taking over from Lawrie Sanchez last Christmas and deciding only to use Healy sparingly in their fight against relegation last season, a move would not have come as a huge shock.
But now the former Inter Milan chief has stated his desire to keep Healy at the Cottage even if Fulham tie up the £11 million signing of Johnson.
“David Healy is a master goal thief,” said Hodgson.
“There aren’t too many coaches who would want to rush one of those out the door.
“Having said that, I wouldn’t nail any player’s feet down to stay at the club.
“If David Healy or any player came to me and told me they wanted to leave then I would let it happen. I don’t believe in holding a player at a club against his will and I won’t do it.”
Hodgson has also revealed he wants to keep long-time Rangers target Steven Davis at Craven Cottage for the new season.
Northern Ireland ace, Davis, is still expected to move to Ibrox before the transfer window shuts at the end of the month but Hodgson will attempt to fight off the advances of Rangers, Blackburn Rovers and West Brom.
He added: “No club has matched our valuation of Steven Davis and I’m glad about that.
“He is a great footballer and you can never have enough of those in your squad.
“I know there is interest from other clubs and I’m not surprised.
“But he is the sort of player I would like to hold on to.”