Dagenham & Redbridge boss John Still insists valuation has not been met for striker Oliver Hawkins
PUBLISHED: 18:06 22 July 2017 | UPDATED: 11:17 23 July 2017
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Daggers boss keen to set record straight after rumours emerged in week of falling out with forward over possible transfer
Dagenham & Redbridge boss John Still insists no club has come close to the valuation of striker Oliver Hawkins.
Still was speaking after seeing his side beaten 2-1 at home to a West Ham United XI in a pre-season friendly, with Mason Bloomfield netting a penalty for Daggers.
In the build-up to the match, there had been speculation on the Dagenham & Redbridge fans’ forum that Still had fallen out with Hawkins, with the forward having his heart set on a move to Portsmouth, who had previously had four bids rejected.
But Still was keen to set the record straight and spoke passionately for four minutes about the subject.
The Daggers boss said: “Let me bring everyone up to date because I am aware of things being said.
“Along with other players, we’ve had offers for Oliver Hawkins. We set a value for Hawkins because we were offered last year the value we’ve asked for this year, that was it.
“No club has matched the value, some have offered nowhere near the value. All we’ve ever said is this is the value, we’re not changing it, dropping it or going above it.
“No one met the value, and then someone was saying on the forum that Hawkins wasn’t going to play for us, well he played against West Ham.
“You hear all the different rumours, but there is no change to anything.
“We are a club over the years who have sold players, but we turned down four offers before we sold Paul Benson; four offers before we sold Craig Mackail-Smith; and three offers before we sold Dwight Gayle because they had value.
“If you’ve got a car that’s worth £20,000 and someone offers you £10,000, of course you won’t sell it. If it’s worth £20,000 and you’re asking £40,000, that’s ridiculous, but we don’t do that.
“If the value is met during the season, we have no problems at all, we’d only be to pleased to help Oliver on his way.
“Unfortunately, people can write things that thousands can read and they can be related to someone, but the only person who knows the facts is me: I’m the one that deals with it.
“With any of our players, we’re only too happy if they get a chance to move away to the right club, but if people want us to give them away for less than their value, it’s not going to happen. We never over-price, that’s why we’ve sold so many.
“If ‘Hawks’ is here for another year, he’s here for another year; if he doesn’t sign a new contract, we have to make a decision whether we’d like to lower the value in January or not.
“We do everything properly here and I never listen to rumours because I know what goes on.
“We would want all of our players to achieve all of their dreams because it’s what we do.
“Somewhere along the line, a value has to be set and off the clubs that have tried to sign Hawks, none have met it.
“Hawks turned down a move last year himself because he wasn’t interested, and that was the highest offer we had.
“We had an offer that was little short, so maybe we could have got the deal done, but he didn’t want to go.
“None of those offers this year have been as much as we were offered last year. He didn’t want to go then, which is his right, and we didn’t feel the value was right now.”