Scunthorpe United move in for Paul Hayes to bolster front line
Days after bringing back one of the heroes of their last promotion from League One, Scunthorpe United are attempting to do the same with another.
The Telegraph has learned the Iron are trying to sign Paul Hayes on loan from Charlton Athletic.
If successful in their move he would become the second member of the team that won the play-off final at Wembley in 2009 to return to Scunthorpe, after defender David Mirfin signed a two-year deal earlier this week.
Hayes, who has had two hugely successful spells previously at Glanford Park, appears surplus to requirements at Charlton – whom he only joined a year ago.
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His career has stagnated since he exited Glanford Park for Preston North End in the summer of 2010, weeks after helping keep the Iron in the Championship.
But he proved his quality out on loan at Wycombe Wanderers during the second half of last season, scoring six goals in as many games.
Hayes was back in Scunthorpe last Sunday as several of the Wembley '09 team were reunited for Cliff Byrne's Benefit Game and looked in good shape, scoring a hat-trick.
Iron boss Alan Knill is thought to have turned his attentions to the former United favourite last week, having initially been pursuing a different option to pep up his attack.
It is unclear what Hayes would make of the chance to return to United for a third stint, but in an interview with the Telegraph in March, days before he played against United for Wycombe, he said he would always retain a strong affinity with the club.
"Part of my heart is still at Scunthorpe. It always will be," he said at the time.
"I said 'no' to going back for a second time. I can't see it happening (for a third), but I'd never say never."
Stumbling blocks for a return include interest from League One rivals Brentford and the player's wages.
Sources close to the Addicks suggest Hayes, along with the majority of the Charlton squad, received a pay increase during the summer on the back of their promotion to the Championship.
While the London club may be prepared to part-subsidise a loan move, the 28-year-old is almost certain to have to take a significant cut if he is to fall in line with the Iron's budget.