Conor McLaughlin will go into Euro 2016 as a Fleetwood Town player, if manager Steven Pressley gets his way.
The Northern Ireland international was linked with Championship sides Wolves and Nottingham Forest late last week – an unwelcome distraction as Town prepared for Saturday’s Johnstone’s Paint Trophy Northern Area Final first leg at Barnsley, which they drew 1-1.
Town have confirmed that the former Preston full-back has 18 months left on his current deal and they are in no rush to sell.
And Pressley issued a clear hands-off warning to anybody considering a swoop for the 24-year-old, though he did suggest McLaughlin’s long-term future might lie away from Highbury.
Town boss Pressley said: “I said to Conor after Saturday’s game that I thought he played (Adam) Hammill better than I’ve seen anybody play him.
“I’ve watched a lot of Barnsley’s games and he’s been a real threat. Conor has been outstanding. I just hope we can keep hold of the player until the summer.
“If he has a great European Championship and there’s real interest, then sometimes you can’t stand in a player’s way. But at this moment I want him here to the end of the season.”
n Town rushed through a new loan deal for defender Joe Davis in time for him to play at Oakwell.
The Leicester centre-half’s initial loan ran out last week and the clubs’ attempts to seal a permanent transfer were delayed by an “administrative issue”.
That has now been resolved and the 22-year-old is expected to complete his move to Highbury in the next 24 hours