Goalkeeper trio linked
Jon McLaughlin has been heavily linked with a free transfer move to Blackburn Rovers once his Sunderland contract expires this summer, with no headway made on a new deal.
That has led to the club being linked with a number of goalkeepers in the last week.
Vaclav Hladky of St Mirren, Aston Villa’s Matija Sarkic and Arsenal youngster James Hillson have all been rumoured to be on Sunderland’s summer wish-list.
The Sunday Post say Rangers are likely to make a move for Hladky this week as they look for back up for Allan McGregor, with Celtic said to be interested, along with Sunderland and MLS outfit Houston Dynamo.
The 29-year-old is out of contract this summer and St Mirren boss Jim Goodwin said that he will do everything he can to hold on to the ‘keeper.
Speaking to Montenegrin outlet Vijesti, Sarkic says his Villa contract is up next month but that he is likely to leave to seek first team football after a successful spell in the first half of this season with Livingston:
It was great in Livingston, the club, however, soon brought in the famous and experienced Spanish goalkeeper Pepe Reina, so there was no room for me.
I think that there will be little space for a real chance in Aston Villa in the future, so I plan to go, despite the club’s desire to extend my contract, which expires at the end of June.
Now I am diligently preparing for the status I want, and that is the first goalkeeper.
There is interest, both in England and abroad.
Sarkic, whose twin brother Oliver plays for League One side Burton Albion, is of interest of both Sunderland and Blackpool according to The Sun (print edition, page 59).
Finally, Arsenal’s Hillman recently agreed a new one year deal according to ESPN. The 19-year-old was offered a new contract after impressing coaches and ESPN claim that he will train with Mikel Arteta’s first team squad.
Despite that, he is likely to be sent on loan to gain experience with Sunderland, Leeds United, Portsmouth, Luton Town and Barnsley all registering an interest in him.