Blackpool won't be forced to sell Armand Gnanduillet in January says manager Simon Grayson

Armand Gnanduillet has been linked with Derby and Charlton
Armand Gnanduillet has been linked with Derby and Charlton
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Simon Grayson has played down speculation linking top goalscorer Armand Gnanduillet with a move away from Blackpool.

READ MORE: Nuttall deserved Blackpool chance says Grayson
The 26-year-old has been linked with Championship sides Charlton Athletic and Derby County in recent weeks.

The striker, who has scored 12 goals in 20 games in all competitions this season, is out of contract at the end of the campaign.

Charlton are reportedly set to renew their interest in the Frenchman after taking a look at him during the summer transfer window.

Gnanduillet, who scored in a 2-1 win against the Addicks in League One last season, was reportedly on their list of potential replacements for star striker Lyle Taylor had he moved on. Taylor is expected to attract attention again in January, having scored five goals in six games before suffering an injury.

Should Lee Bowyer’s side lose Taylor in the New Year, that could spark fears at Bloomfield Road of Charlton renewing their interest in Gnanduillet.

Derby are also thought to be keeping tabs on Gnanduillet, having scouted him on a number of occasions this season.

When asked about the speculation, Grayson told The Gazette: “I would think any player that is playing well and is scoring goals will get interest.

“We’re looking at players all the time but financially we won’t have to sell him – that is what Simon Sadler is saying about all our players.

“We’ll do what is right for the football club but it’s pure speculation at this time.

“No-one from Derby or Charlton has rung me yet, so we’ll have to wait and see.

“Maybe it’s an agent just playing a bit of early transfer business when we’ve still got six weeks to go.”

Regarding a new contract for Gnanduillet, Grayson added: “I think the club have mentioned it to his agent, so we’ll just see where that one goes.”

Gnanduillet missed Saturday’s 2-2 draw at Ipswich Town. He was left out as a precaution after picking up a knock against AFC Wimbledon the previous weekend, when he bagged both goals in the 2-0 win.

Gnanduillet could have been risked at Portman Road but Grayson decided to err on the side of caution.

He is also likely to miss tomorrow’s EFL Trophy second-round tie at home to Scunthorpe United.

Grayson said: “His thigh was tight from last weekend’s game, which is why he came off against AFC Wimbledon.

“He’s not going to be weeks and weeks. We’ll just take care of him this week, where we play on Wednesday and on Sunday. Obviously if there’s any doubt he won’t play in those games.

“He could have played (at Ipswich) but he might have made it worse, so it was a decision we made and hopefully he’s not out for too long.”