Rovers confirm Leonard interest
By Graeme Bailey. Last Updated: January 1, 1970 1:00am
BLACKBURN ROVERS have confirmed that they have opened talks with Belgian defender Phillipe Leonard.
The Monaco left back is leaving the Principality outfit after being handed a free transfer.
Blackburn moved for Leonard in January, but the player shunned the option of a loan move and Rovers signed Parma's Vratislav Gresko instead.
The Lancashire outfit have been trying to sign the Slovakian on a permanent deal for most of this summer, but they have failed to agree personal terms and are now looking at alternatives.
News of Leonard's availability has alerted Rovers boss Graeme Souness - who is now talking with the Belgium full back.
Rovers could now have two new faces in their squad before pre-season training begins next week.
Rangers captain Lorenzo Amoruso is expected to complete a deal this week and Leonard could join him within the next seven days.
Rovers released a statement confirming the situation regarding Amoruso, Leonard and Gresko.
"Ewood Park officials are still in conversation with Amoruso's representatives over personal terms," read the statement on the club`s website.
"Meanwhile, a fee has been agreed with the Italian's former club, Glasgow Rangers, and the player himself has passed a medical examination.
"Rovers are hoping to push through a deal in time for the defender to be involved in pre-season training, which starts up next week.
"The club this morning also confirmed renewed interest in a former target, Monaco left back Philippe Leonard.
"Talks aimed at securing a permanent deal with Slovakian full back Vratislav Gresko, who enjoyed a successful five-month loan spell at Ewood Park, appear to have hit the rocks.
"In its wake, experienced the Belgian international is fast emerging as the main target to bolster the left hand side of defence."