Chelsea target Pickford
Sunderland academy product Jordan Pickford is being targeted by Chelsea if or when Thibaut Courtois leaves the Blues to head to Real Madrid, according to Sky Sports News.
Pickford left Sunderland to join Everton last year for a fee of up to £30m and was quick to impress as he was named the Toffees Player of the Season, Players’ Player of the Season and their Young Player of the Season.
The 24-year-old then went on to play a starring role in England’s run to the World Cup Semi-Final, including being the hero in the second round penalty shoot-out win over Colombia.
Those good performances will have seen Pickford’s value go through the roof and although Sky Sports claim Everton will resist any approach for the goalkeeper, any possible fee - while huge - will unfortunately have no bearing on Sunderland after the previous regime failed to insert a sell-on clause into his Everton contract.
Incoming players praised by clubs
As we revealed this week, Jack Baldwin and Luke O’Nien are both set to join Sunderland, pending the players completing medicals, and their soon-to-be former clubs were quick to praise their departing players.
Peterborough’s owner Darragh MacAnthony took to Twitter to explain that although Baldwin needs a change for himself, he is a superb young man who will be missed by Posh:
Course but I have to do right by player and manager on things like this. Jack needs a change for himself also so I’m backing that & our manager. He’s a superb young man & I will of course miss him. This is football. https://t.co/yEZ9iIxwcS— Darragh MacAnthony (@DMAC102) July 27, 2018
O’Nien’s current club Wycombe were sad to see their midfielder leave but their chairman Trevor Stroud heaped praise on the 23-year-old:
Luke has been a fantastic ambassador for the club on and off the field and we’re sorry to see him go, but he has an exciting adventure ahead of him at undoubtedly the biggest club in League 1 and we wish him all the best for the future.
Wanderers manager Gareth Ainsworth gave an interview after their pre-season game against Maidenhead United where he spoke about his immense pride in seeing O’Nien head to Sunderland:
More Oviedo interest
Sunderland may have another option when it comes to Bryan Oviedo, as Spanish side Cordoba CF have been credited with an interest in the player.
Cordoba are looking for a new left-back and although their number one target is Carlos Pomares, Oviedo is an option for the Segunda Division club.
According to cordobadeporte.com, the Costa Rican international has been offered to the club on loan, with the Spanish club only needing to pay 50% of his wages.
Although Sunderland’s preference would obviously be to sell the player, with Club Brugge still keen, as the window winds down, a loan can’t be ruled out - as long as said loan is on Sunderland’s terms.
Sunderland target Billy Sharp was once again in pre-season action for Sheffield United last night.
The 32-year-old skippered the Blades and played the full game in their 2-0 win over Sharp’s old club Doncaster Rovers.
David McGolderick opened the scoring in the 73rd minute and then set up Sharp to score the second six minutes later.
Adams signs for South Shields
Sunderland academy product Blair Adams has signed for Northern Premier League outfit South Shields on a free transfer.
The left-back’s contract expired at Hartlepool United this summer and he has opted to continue his career at Mariners Park.
Adams is the second academy product to join the club this summer after Daniel Wright completed his move earlier in the week.