HULL manager Steve Bruce believes securing striker Sone Aluko on a new contract could be his most significant business of the January transfer window.
The 24-year-old Nigeria international, whose current deal was due to expire in the summer, agreed a two-and-a-half-year extension last week as he works his way back to fitness from an Achilles injury.
And while Bruce has been linked with a move for Sunderland striker Steven Fletcher he believes keeping hold of Aluko was vital.
“It could be the most important piece of business we do this month,” Bruce told the Hull Daily Mail.
“If Sone gets fit over the next couple of weeks, he’s a top player as we’ve seen time and again.
“He’s a special player for us, I’ve said that all along, so let’s hope we see him doing what he does best in the next month or so.”
Aluko is itching for a return as he has been out since mid-October and having signed a new contract he is keen to repay the confidence shown in him by Bruce.
“I need to focus on getting back playing and getting back playing well,” he told hullcityafc.net.
“The manager and the owners have shown a level of faith in me and I have to repay that by playing well on the pitch. That has always been my priority.
“I’m trying not to set any deadlines and I’m just taking it day by day but so far it’s gone according to plan and I think I’m maybe even ahead of schedule so hopefully I’ll be back playing soon.
“I believe that when I get back playing, I’ll hit the ground running and recapture the form I was in before.