Hull boss Mike Phelan has confirmed he wants Arsenal defender Carl Jenkinson to boost his club’s Premier League survival bid.
Jenkinson, 24, has been restricted to five cup appearances this season for Arsenal, and Phelan has targeted Jenkinson to help shore up his leaky defence, which has conceded 39 goals in 18 league games, but faces stiff competition from several other top-flight clubs.
“Yes, he’s been spoken about. But there are a few others in the hat for Carl,” Phelan told a press conference before Friday’s night’s televised home league game against Everton.
“I would love him to come here. I’ve spoken to staff at Arsenal and I’ve been encouraged by it.
“But I do also realise that there are other clubs interested in Carl. So that’s where we’re at at the moment and nothing definite has gone ahead and there are others.”
West Ham, where Jenkinson spent the best part of two seasons on loan, are understood to be among those interested in the defender, along with Sam Allardyce’s Crystal Palace.
Meanwhile, Phelan said he had not been approached by any club for defender and reported Middlesbrough target Harry Maguire and that a striker was also at the top of his wanted list as he works towards bringing in two new players.
“I haven’t had any real answers from the other clubs,” he said. “I think everyone’s lining up their ducks really and whether (the deals) get done earlier or later is down to who you’re taking them from really.
“But I have got one or two in mind. Whether we can get them done is difficult, but we keep trying to push the right buttons and see whether we can.
“I’ve got a couple I think we may be able to get done. But I can only bring them to the table and after that it’s up to other people to get them over the line.”
Hull will bid to climb off the foot of the table with their first win in eight league games on Friday, while Phelan has been installed as the bookmakers’ favourite to become the next Premier League manager to lose his job.
Second-bottom Swansea sacked Bob Bradley on Tuesday, but although Hull have won only three games since winning promotion back to the top flight via the play-offs in May, there has been no clamour yet from Tigers fans for their club to dispense with Phelan.
When asked if he was feeling the pressure, Phelan added: “I feel for the players, I feel for the club and I feel for the supporters because a lot of hard work has gone into getting into this division.
“Obviously a lot of hard work has been done by everybody here to try and stay in it.
“We’re supporting the players as best as we possibly can and the players are supporting the staff as best as they can, by putting in their effort.
“I think there comes a time when we now need to push on and show our credentials and get some points on the board.
“If we can do that and get a bit of a run going – we’re getting a run of performances, we’re not getting a run of results – but that can change in a game and hopefully that will change come Friday.”
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