NEW Huddersfield Town signing Neil Danns might be surplus to requirements at Leicester – but he was a wanted man at Bristol City.
The 30-year-old midfielder has agreed a second loan of the season by joining Town, after scoring twice in nine games for the West Country side.
Bristol boss Derek McInnes was keen to retain Danns, saying after his final outing at Millwall on New Year’s Day: “If there is a chance of Neil becoming available again on loan, or if there is a permanent deal to be done, we’ll certainly be at the front of queue.”
Instead the Liverpudlian will link up with his Foxes teammate Jermaine Beckford at the John Smith’s Stadium, fulfilling Town manager Simon Grayson’s desire for another experienced midfield operator.
Grayson will hope to field Danns against one of his former clubs Birmingham on Saturday, when Town will try to build on their FA Cup success at Charlton by clinching a first Championship win in 11 attempts.
Danns played for Blues between June 2006, when he signed from Colchester for £500,000, and January 2008, when he made a £600,000 switched to Crystal Palace, where he played alongside Town pair Alan Lee and Sean Scannell.
He helped Birmingham win promotion to the Premier League in 2007, a year after being a key cog in the Colchester side who finished second in League I.
Danns came through the youth ranks at Blackburn, and had productive loan spells at Blackpool, where he played alongside Grayson, Hartlepool and Colchester, who signed him on a permanent basis in December 2004.
His switch from Palace, for whom he made more than 100 appearances, to Leicester came during the close-season of 2011.
He turned down an offer from Rangers to sign a three-year contract but, like Beckford, has been out of favour under Nigel Pearson.
Danns’ first appearance for Town, where he will provide competition for Keith Southern, Oliver Norwood, Adam Clayton, Scott Arfield, Chris Atkinson and Oscar Gobern, on the way back to fitness after ankle surgery, will be the 323rd of his career. He has netted 62 goals.
He becomes Grayson’s 13th signing for Town and sixth on loan after Diego Arismendi (Stoke), Beckford, Simon Church (Reading), Adam Hammill (Wolves) and James Vaughan (Norwich).