Five loan destinations for Stoke City centre back Robert Huth
Stoke City, 13/8 chances with Coral for a top 10 finish, are reportedly willing to allow giant German central defender Robert Huth leave the Britannia on loan for the rest of the season.
Potters boss Mark Hughes is understood to have held talks with Huth, 30, about a temporary move away as he is yet to start a Premier League game this season after recovering a serious injury sustained in November 2013.
A number of unnamed Premier League and Championship clubs are rumoured to be after him, so that got us thinking where will Huth go? We’ve come up with five potential destinations for the ex-Chelsea player, nicknamed ‘the Berlin Wall’, to go out to on loan.
Paul Lambert will face a struggle to keep his star players at Villa Park this winter, and chief among those is central defender and club captain Ron Vlaar, who caught the eye in the Netherlands side that finished third in Brazil.
With Villa 11/4 to be relegated, losing the likes of Vlaar, midfielder Fabian Delph and striker Christian Benteke would be disastrous for their survival hopes. Huth has almost 250 games of Premier League experience under his belt, and would be a temporary solution should this gap in Lambert’s defence materialise.
Rams head coach Steve McClaren may have lined up Huth’s move to Middlesbrough before leaving the Riverside to become England boss in the summer of 2006. The pair could finally get to work together at Pride Park some eight-and-a-half years on.
Derby remain 2/1 favourites for the Championship title and odds-on 8/13 promotion chances, so Huth would be linking up with a team desperate to avoid the play-off pain they experienced at Wembley last May. His Premier League class alongside County club captain Richard Keogh at the back could help get the East Midlands outfit up.
Nigel Pearson’s Foxes prop up the Premier League table, and they are short on Premier League calibre defenders. The likes of Liam Moore, West Morgan and Martin Wasilewski are all playing English top-flight football for the first time in their careers.
Huth is something of an upgrade on these names, but the big question is would he want to join a team in immediate relegation danger? Leicester are odds-on at 5/6 for the drop.
West Bromwich Albion
Baggies boss Tony Pulis signed him for Stoke, so the pair could link up again some 40 miles south of the potteries. Albion have already steered themselves away from the bottom three thanks to the Welsh manager, who has never been relegated in his coaching career.
With West Brom now 10/3 chances for the drop, they are no longer among the favourites to go down. Huth could form a tasty centre back pairing with ex-England international Joleon Lescott at The Hawthorns and replace the ageing legs of 35-year-old Gareth McAuley.
Kenny Jackett’s capture of highly-rated Arsenal attacker Benik Afobe was a real statement of intent by West Midlands outfit Wolverhampton Wanderers. Having added extra spice up front, it would also be prudent to strengthen defence to bolster the promotion push at Molineux.
Wolves, 7/1 shots to go up, look a little short at centre half, largely relying on long-serving Richard Stearman and academy product Danny Batth. Adding Huth to these options and backup defender Sam Ricketts would be something of a coup.