Coventry City manager Andy Thorn has run out of patience with his striker Freddy Eastwood and has told him he is free to leave the club.
Eastwood has been unfit since the summer and despite being sent to Lilleshall to undergo fitness training, he has not responded sufficiently well enough for Thorn's liking.
Eastwood is in the last year of his four year contract and is one of the higher paid players at the club. If he is not contributing in any way to team the club cannot afford to pay him for effectively doing nothing.
Unfortunately his wage demands could be a stumbling block for both him and the club when it comes to finding another club willing to take the 27 year old striker on. Clubs that might be willing to employ Eastwood, most likely in League 1, or possibly 2, can't afford his wages and Championship clubs will not be over interested in an unfit striker who has not proved his worth at that level. He has scored just 18 goals in 117 appearances for Coventry City.
Thorn is both disappointed and irritated with Eastwood and finally admitted defeat and is now prepared to allow him to leave.
Speaking to the CT's Andy Turner: Thorn said, “I have had a chat with him and told him it is time he found another club. I need all hands on deck and it’s just not happening.
"I have spoken to his agent as well because it is time to move on. I can’t use him at the moment because he’s a passenger and I need all the help I can get with everyone pulling in the right direction. He’s a good lad, a good kid, but it’s time for him to find another club.”
Eastwood returned from his short stint at Lilleshall and continued his fitness training at the club's training ground at Ryton, mostly by doing extra running, but with little success.
Thorn does not hold out much hope that the situation will change, which is galling for a manager who has to cope with a very small squad of players and can ill afford to lose even one who is unfit, but Eastwood has been given the opportunity to improve but has not taken it.
Eastwood joined Coventry City three years ago for £1.2m from Wolves, but Thorn can see no way back for him. He said: “I have been waiting for him to get himself right since we came back in July. We’re in October now so I have been waiting for three months.”
Eastwood did his future at Coventry no good last month when on his return from Lilleshall he stormed out of the ground when he discovered he was on on Thorn's team sheet for the home game against Derby County. He was subsequently disciplined by the club for his unacceptable behaviour.
Thorn added: “It’s disappointing because, as I said, he is a good lad but the football club and the team comes first and when one of your highest earners is not contributing there’s not much else you can do.
"So I think it is time for him to move on and I’ve told him that. That’s football. If he comes back flying and his weight is right then fine. As a senior player I expected him to give me a hell of a lot more. He’s been told what to do but I can’t play him at the moment.”
Thorn did reveal: “We’ve had some interest from League One clubs but they can’t take him because of his wages.”
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