Northampton Town ‘monitoring the situation’ of goalkeeper Duke

TRANSFER TARGET - the Cobblers are monitoring former loanee Matt Duke's situation at Bradford City
TRANSFER TARGET - the Cobblers are monitoring former loanee Matt Duke's situation at Bradford City
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The Cobblers are keen on signing goalkeeper Matt Duke from Bradford City, with manager Aidy Boothroyd confirming he believes the 35-year-old is a ‘top keeper’.

But the Town boss is almost lukewarm about the prospect of offering a contract to out-of-contract striker Rene Howe.

Boothroyd admits the former Torquay striker, who scored 16 goals in a struggling Gulls side last term, is somebody whose talents he appreciates.

The former Kettering and Rushden front man is a hot prospect this summer and Oxford United and Southend United have both confirmed their interest.

While he is on Northampton’s 15-strong list of goalscoring targets, though, Boothroyd is not overly enthused about the signing.

“I like Rene Howe but I don’t think he’s going to be at the top of our list,” he confirmed.

Duke, though, is a player that does interest Boothroyd. The two enjoyed a successful working relationship alongside each other at Sixfields 18 months ago but doubts remain over the goalkeeper’s availability this summer.

It is understood the 35-year-old has been offered a contract extension at Bradford but with the caveat that he will start the campaign as back-up to Jon McLaughlin, who started the league two play-off final against the Cobblers on May 18.

Boothroyd is keeping a keen eye on the situation involving Duke, whose current deal at Valley Parade expires in July.

“I thought Dukey became a fans’ favourite here very quickly and you can see why, because his performances for Bradford were phenomenal last season,” he said.

“If he does become available then there will certainly be a lot of interest from me and from us because we think he’s a top keeper. We’re going to monitor the situation but if he did become available he’s certainly someone who I would be interested in signing.”