Burton Albion are preparing themselves for significant interest in midfielder Jackson Irvine this summer with a host of rival Championship clubs reported to be interested.
Albion manager Nigel Clough will be keen to hold on to his star player beyond the summer after he played a key role in the Brewers avoiding the drop to League One last season.
An impressive debut season
Irvine only joined Burton from Ross County last summer and has impressed many by how well he has settled into life at the Pirelli Stadium. Clough managed to secure his services for a fee said to be around the £330,000-mark last summer, which remains a club record.
It did not take long for Irvine to get off the mark in his first season in English football. He scored his first goal for the club against Sheffield Wednesday in a 3-1 victory at the Pirelli Stadium in August. This was the start of what was a highly impressive season for the Australian international as he went on to score a further nine goals and cement his place in the starting line-up.
Clough bases his Burton team are a strong work ethic and Irvine certainly falls into this category and his attitude this season has been first class. He would certainly be an astute addition to any team in the Championship and he may even yet have a future in the Premier League.
A host of teams interested
However, his performances have not gone unnoticed by Albion’s Championship rivals. The likes of Wolverhampton Wanderers, Derby County, Sheffield Wednesday, Fulham and Aston Villa are all reportedly interested in luring the 24-year-old away from the Pirelli Stadium.
It is unlikely that any deal will happen in the near future as he is currently away on international duty as he has become a key player for the Australian national team. Clough has already stated that it may be difficult for the club to keep hold of their main man if any offers come in which are too good for the club to turn down.
Despite this, there is a glimmer of hope for Brewers’ fans that Irvine may remain at the club beyond the summer. It is already clear that he is not looking to force a move away from the club, although this could change as the summer goes on.
He has stated that money is not the main factor on his decision on where he plays his football. This is a positive sign for supporters and they will be hoping he continue to improve whilst remaining an Albion player.