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MANAGER: He came to us as a project

8 July 2016

Keith Curle with an update on Alexander McQueen

Manager Keith Curle confirmed today that the club is still waiting to hear from Alexander McQueen's representatives on the contract offer made to the player at the end of last season.

McQueen, 21, joined the Blues on a one-year deal last summer and made 21 appearances which earned him a new contract offer from the manager at the end of the season.

“We’re waiting to hear from his representatives,” Curle confirmed. “We made him an offer and we’ve had some negotiation, but the next step forward was for both parties to sit down and continue to talk. 

“The last dialogue we had was that they were meeting amongst themselves and they were then coming back to us.”

“I’ve put a valuation on him in my own mind, within the pay structure of the club, because I think he came to us as a project,” he said. “That was deemed by us to be a success, with him having started 20 plus games in his first year as a professional. 

“He integrated very well but you don’t just go from that to being a fully recognised professional. I was always told you couldn’t expect to call yourself a professional footballer until you’d played 100 league games. It was Bobby Gould, my first manager, who told me that and it’s part of the grounding I still take on board.”

“Alex did well for us and he was rewarded for his efforts because of his incentive based contract,” he explained. “I still believe that younger players need to earn rewards. 

“He’s had his offer off the back of a good first season but if his recommendations are that he turns it down then we are entitled to compensation. I’ll be disappointed if Alex doesn’t see his progression as being here. He coped very well with us in the real world of professional football and he showed glimpses of why we brought him here.”

On potential interest from elsewhere for McQueen, he said: “It’s possible he’s had interest from Bournemouth, or somebody else on the south coast. If it’s true then it comes from them having spotted him and seen something in him. 

“He could be somebody they use in the latter stages of a development squad, or something like that, if they feel he isn’t quite ready for first team football at that level. It’s also possible that it was just a rumour.”

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