Football journalist Pete O’Rourke has claimed that Stoke City are ‘closing in’ on the signing of Charlton Athletic’s Alfie Doughty.

Stoke City could beat all of Bournemouth, QPR, Celtic and Rangers to the signing of Doughty should they pull it off. The 21-year-old has this month been linked with a move away with contract talks having broke down at The Valley, and clubs eyeing a cut-price deal.

Stoke though could beat several suitors to the signing of Doughty this month:

Celtic and Rangers have reportedly offered Doughty pre-contract deals. Being outside of England, the Old Firm clubs are able to offer English-based players pre-contract deals in January.

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In the Championship, all of Bournemouth, QPR and Stoke have been vying for Doughty this month. All three are said to have had bids accepted and all three have agreed that Doughty will remain on loan at Charlton for the remainder of the season should his transfer be sealed this month.

A product of the Charlton youth academy, Doughty broke into the first-team last season. He was recalled by Lee Bowyer amid an injury crisis and would go on to feature 29 times in the second-tier last season, scoring twice.

Now though, his Charlton future looks to be in up in the air and Bowyer could well be facing a measly transfer sum for what looks to be a player with huge potential.

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Returning to The Valley is a good outcome for Doughty – he likely wouldn’t get much game time in the Championship having been limited to just seven League One appearances this season, and it’d put him in good stead to return to his potential new employer in the summer.

 

It’d be a huge signing for Stoke. They could yet be a Premier League team by the time Doughty returns, and he could yet go on to become a huge player for them.

As for Bournemouth and QPR, they’re at polarising ends of the Championship table. Nevertheless, Doughty would’ve been a keen addition at either club and his apparently imminent arrival at Stoke will come as a huge blow to them both.