Midweek Sport - - SPORT - By JONNY FORD­HAM

BILLY SHARP’S suit­ors have been dealt a blow in their hopes of sign­ing the Southamp­ton ace.

Saints are look­ing to off­load the 27-year-old (above) – with Read­ing, Don­caster, Bournemouth, Not­ting­ham For­est and Barns­ley all keen.

But the player’s agent has told his ad­mir­ers Sharp is only look­ing to find a top-flight club.

James Feather­stone said: “It is a dif­fi­cult one. He has been pre-sea­son train­ing with Southamp­ton, work­ing hard, and ob­vi­ously he wants to try to force his way into the team. With him be­ing out on loan last sea­son, and a new man­ager com­ing in, he hasn’t re­ally had a chance to im­press.

“But if he doesn’t get an op­por­tu­nity at Southamp­ton and it is get­ting close to trans­fer dead­line day, we will have to start mak­ing a de­ci­sion about what is best for Billy.

“I think Southamp­ton are prob­a­bly hold­ing out to see if there are any more en­quiries that come in.”

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