Stoke City have held talks aimed at rewarding experienced striker Peter Crouch with a new contract, manager Mark Hughes has confirmed.
The 33-year-old was on target in a 2-2 draw against his and Hughes’ old club QPR on Saturday and reports had suggested Loftus Road manager Harry Redknapp was keen to take Crouch back to west London.
The former England international’s current deal runs out at the end of the season but Hughes rates his contribution and is confident he will stay at the Britannia Stadium.
“We’ve had conversations about that [a new contract]. Peter knows how much value I place on him, not only on the field, but also off it,” Hughes told The Sentinel.
“Everybody enjoys his personality and his company, so that’s something we are mindful of and you don’t allow that to leave your club lightly.
“It [a new contract] is not something we have gone into in depth, but Peter knows how much we value him.”
The former Wales boss said Crouch could carry on playing into his late 30s and that he has developed a better understanding of the game.
He added: “Given what’s he’s asked to do, he’s as good as any around. He’s a fit guy and pace isn’t the main asset he has. I know myself. My game was never based on pace and I was able to go on until I was 38.
“Maybe when you get older you get a better understanding of how you can be most effective and more of an irritant to the opposition.”
Stoke City make the trip to the Stadium of Light on Tuesday to take on Sunderland in the Capital One Cup and are currently priced 3.00 in the 90-minutes market. The draw is quoted 3.15 and the home win is available to back at 2.33.