SHEFFIELD WEDNESDAY: Fight is on for Richard Keogh

Wanted man: Centre-half Richard Keogh is being chased by several clubs
Wanted man: Centre-half Richard Keogh is being chased by several clubs

SHEFFIELD Wednesday could be tracking Coventry City centre-half Richard Keogh.

Several Championship outfits are in for the defender who could leave the Sky Blues after their relegation to League One and has a year left on his contract.

Bristol City are understood to have bid around £250,000, Cardiff around £400,000. Leeds have also been linked with him, and there have been inquiries from other clubs.

Wednesday are in the market for another centre-half, and Keogh is an established Championship centre back, a 25-year-old who over the last two seasons has played almost every game and been regarded as his club’s star player.

Coventry want him to stay and help them mount a promotion challenge next season and have been hoping to agree a new deal with him.

Would-be buyers hope that the Sky Blues can be tempted to cash in, while Coventry have hinted that if they were unable to keep him then his departure would be allowed only for a substantial price.

Derby could be among the clubs eyeing him after the £1 million-plus move of their ex-Barnsley star Jason Shackell to well-off Burnley was lined up. The Clarets sold striker Jay Rodriguez to Southampton for £7 million.

The Sky Blues are on record as saying that they have told interested clubs they are negotiating with Keogh and his agent about a new deal.

If there is uncertainty about whether or not he will be leaving Coventry, it could fit with Wednesday’s well-documented stance about having to play a waiting game over some undisclosed targets, as well as over Reading winger Michail Antonio.

The Owls could also be comparing the merits of signing Keogh with the possibility of taking his centre-back partner, Martin Cranie.

Cranie, aged 25, has rejected a new deal and left because he wants to continue playing in the Championship. The pair’s partnership has meant restricted opportunities for ex-Owls defender Richard Wood.

Keogh joined Coventry from Carlisle two years ago. When he was sent off in a home game against Doncaster in April it ended a run of 91 consecutive games for him.

Cranie has been linked with Middlesbrough. He joined the Sky Blues from Portsmouth in 2009.