Express & Star

Walsall transfer news: Jon Whitney looking at new George Dobson loan deal

Walsall boss Jon Whitney says talks to re-sign George Dobson from West Ham remain ongoing.

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The 19-year-old midfielder impressed in 26 appearances for the Saddlers last season after being snapped up on a season-long loan. Dobson has a year remaining on his West Ham contract but has previously said he would be open to second loan spell at the Banks’s Stadium. And Whitney is still keen to add the youngster to his squad ahead of the 2017/18 campaign.

“I am still speaking to West Ham about George,” Whitney said.

“I am still negotiating on that. But George is a player I like and I’m keen for him to come back.

“At this precise moment I’m really prioritising a couple of other positions.

“But George is still in the mix and I am still in contact with him.”

Meanwhile, Whitney is looking forward to taking his Walsall team to play Lincoln in a pre-season friendly on July 29.

The Saddlers boss made 121 appearances for the Imps between 1995 and 1998 and scored 11 goals before moving to Hull City.

And he admitted it will be great to go back to Sincil Bank and lock horns with Danny Cowley’s men – who recently won promotion into League Two.

“Playing at Lincoln is one of my fondest memories as a player,” Whitney said. “We got promoted under John Beck to Division Two in 1998 and we had the likes of Gareth Ainsworth and Darren Huckerby playing for us.

“The fans in the city that year were incredible - I lived there for four years and my son Luke was born in the county hospital. “They had a fantastic season last time out; gaining promotion by winning the National League and enjoying a wonderful run in the FA Cup.

“I hope they have another great season and the manager and players deserve great credit.

“I’m very proud to be Walsall manager, and I’m very proud to take the team to Lincoln this summer.”