Jacob Greaves and Jaden Philogene sales assessed as Hull City face huge rebuild on a budget

Defender Jacob Greaves is expected to leave Hull City in the coming days
-Credit: (Image: Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images)


Hull City duo Jaden Philogene and Jacob Greaves look set to turn their back on the Tigers and secure their respective dreams of playing in the Premier League.

Amid interest from the likes of West Ham, Everton, Nottingham Forest, Barcelona and Crystal Palace for the respective players, it's Ipswich Town who have seemingly won the race with the Tractor Boys the only ones to have agreed a deal at this stage.

The prospect of chancing their arm in the top flight with Kieran McKenna's Tractor Boys has trumped more established Premier League and European names, leaving City to reflect on the sizeable task of filling their boots amid a summer where so much work remains to be done.

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Two of last season's star men, neither will be easy to replace. Greaves, the hometown hero, was named in the Championship's Team of the Season while Philogene ended the campaign with 12 goals and six assists - the club's top scorer - along with a flurry of England Under-21 caps. Even if City expected the double departure, it doesn't make it any easier to fill that void and it could be costly at that.

In return for selling two of the best, and most sought-after talents outside the big league, the Tigers will recoup a significant transfer fee understood to be in the region of £40m plus some sizeable sell-on clauses, should either leave Portman Road in the near future, but that sale will not see City suddenly armed with a huge wedge of cash, they will not be splashing millions around, that is not a luxury they'll enjoy.

Owner Acun Ilicali has been at pains to explain in recent months the club's dalliance with Financial Fair Play (FFP), and how they've been walking the proverbial tightrope in recent windows, particularly after last season's ambitious exertions which saw them invest heavily both in the permanent and loan market in a bid to win promotion, which ultimately fell desperately short.

Despite a huge upturn in the last two years since Ilicali's takeover, City's income remains modest compared to other Championship clubs, and because of that, their ability to flex their financial desires in the transfer market has to be tempered somewhat, much to the Turkish businessman's ongoing frustrations.

That remains the case, and though the Tigers are not in danger of breaching FFP based on their plans for the remainder of the summer window, there will be no lavish spending on transfer fees that could see them placed at risk. Instead, it's understood City will try to be sensible and pragmatic in the window despite a perceived cash injection.

Put simply, if City were allowed to go out and spend big, there would be a desire to do that, but the feeling within the MKM Stadium is that they just cannot do that.

Players with the profile of Chris Willock at QPR prove that a sensible approach can still yield success, and they've shown with Philogene their capacity to buy low and sell high, something they could look to do again before the window shuts at the end of next month, but it will not be at expense of causing themselves an unnecessary problem.