Swansea City have been linked with a move for Middlesbrough’s Danish international striker Martin Braithwaite, although Graham Potter has downplayed suggestions there will be much trade coming into the Liberty Stadium next month.
Braithwaite – who played for the Danes in their 2-1 victory over Wales last month – has not scored for Boro since August and has been in and out of the team this season under manager Tony Pulis.
The former Toulouse forward went out on loan to Bordeaux last season, but cost Boro a hefty £9m 18 months ago and any move to the Swans is likely to be a loan also.
Potter has admitted he has been over-reliant on Oli McBurnie to carry the burden as his primary source of goals and with Wilfried Bony’s fitness levels still uncertain, Braithwaite could provide a proven an alternative.
Potter, though, has given the impression he is expecting more players leaving the club in January’s transfer window rather than coming in as he prepares to take his team to Hull City on Saturday.
He said: “I think the January window has the possibility effect. The possibility that something can come in and really kick you on, but if you really zoom out of it, the chances of getting someone who can help that and getting their team to agree to a move is not so easy.
“Then again, there’s the possibility that things could go wrong as well, as we’ve saw in the last January window here, which didn’t necessarily result in success.
“The most important thing is to make a decision that can help the team carry on improving, and at the same to give you the opportunity to win football matches and in the long term not to hamstring you later on.
“The club has gone through a restructuring process that has happened in the last window and we have to get the club back on its feet and going in a direction we’re all comfortable with. That will continue in this window.
“There’s no figure [in terms of budget]. There’s no ‘I’ve got this or that’, we understand that we’re in the start of this process to get the club back in.
“We want to carry on making good decisions for the short term, to make the team competitive and help us win and in the same time move forward so the club’s in a better position medium to long term. That’s pretty much where we’re at.”
Potter has confirmed that the club have opened talks with captain Mike van der Hoorn over securing the central defender on a new contract.
The Dutchman has been an integral part of Potter’s plans this season, and is the only player to start every Championship game this term for the Swans.
The 26-year-old was appointed as vice-captain during the summer and has regularly led the side as skipper Leroy Fer has faced injury problems.
Van der Hoorn’s current contract is due to expire next summer but, while not prepared to discuss specific details, Potter says discussions to keep the ex-Ajax centre-half in SA1 are in progress.
“There is no update as such but we are speaking to the player,” said Potter.
“I would prefer to keep the conversations between the player and the club private, but they are ongoing with Mike.
“He has done really well for us this year, he has got better and better and has been playing to a really consistent level.”