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West Brom target Kone, Odemwingie consigned to exit

ESPN staff
June 18, 2013 « Live County Championship coverage | Chartbeat test »
Arouna Kone scored 13 goals in all competitions last season © PA Photos
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Steve Clarke has identified Arouna Kone as a potential replacement for Romelu Lukaku and is waiting to see if chairman Jeremy Peace will sanction a £6.5 million bid for the Wigan Athletic striker.

Clarke has become resigned to losing Lukaku to his parent club Chelsea, following the forward's impressive loan spell last season and has made signing a new goalscorer a priority in the summer transfer window.

Kone was touted as a serious target during a recent club meeting with technical and sporting director Richard Garlick, following Wigan's relgation to the Championship.

Clarke expects to make one "marquee" signing this summer and Kone has a £6.5m release clause in his Wigan contract, but any Albion bid appears to hinge on finding a buyer for Peter Odemwingie.

Odemwingie has again indicated his intention to leave the club this summer and Albion are hoping to raise £3m for the Nigeria international, which will help fund a bid for Kone.

Clarke expects competition in any attempt to lure Kone to the Hawthorns, with former Wigan manager Roberto Martinez interested in linking up with the striker again at Everton.

Hull City and Liverpool have also expressed an interest in the Ivory Coast international who scored 13 goals in all competitions last season.

Albion have also been monitoring the situation of PSV Eindhoven striker Ola Toivonen, but the Swedish international looks set for a move to Norwich City, who have agreed a £4.8m fee with the Dutch club.

Odemwingie is still uncertain about where he will be playing next season, with Hull City, Crystal Palace, Queens Park Rangers and Swansea City all monitoring his situation, but he has made it clear he will happily move on this summer if Albion accept a fee.

He would even consider dropping out of the Premier League, saying: "It looks like I will leave the Hawthorns. We are talking now, but where I'll end up I don't know. I want playing time. Even if it is a team that is not so good, from the Championship - I will go there as I just want to play.

"I thought things could be done easier, there was a new manager who came in and it didn't go in my favour. I was moved out of my position. I made a name for scoring goals.

"I got used to winning player of the month awards. But I'd have a few games, I was in form, but didn't play. I wanted to move on."

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