According to the latest reports from West Sussex County Times, Sunderland linked defender Ross Sykes has signed a new contract with his current outfit Accrington Stanley.
The defender was in the final few months of his contract and Sunderland were in with a shout to sign him on a free transfer in the summer. However, now from the latest reporting, it seems that the defender has signed a new two and a half year contract with an option to extend it further for another year.
The defender is currently struggling with a groin injury. However, this is no doubt a massive statement from Accrington as they have managed to tie down Sykes to a new contract. Stanley are struggling on the 14th spot in the League One table, and we felt Sunderland might have the edge in signing him as they are in a strong position to move to the Championship by next season.
Sykes joined his current club in 2016 after starting his youth career with Burnley. The English defender stands in at 6ft4inches, and as expected strong in the air. To go with that, he has a decent positional sense, and one could understand why Sunderland were after him.
It remains to be seen though whether the Black Cats would still be interested in signing the defender for a transfer fee. Of course, the deal isn’t going to be as sweet as before, but Sykes has the quality to play at the Championship level.
Sunderland currently have the likes of Jimmy Dunne, Tm Flanagan, Jack Baldwin, Alim Ozturk and Glenn Loovens as their centre back options. Out of the lot, Dunne joined the Stadium of Light on loan in January from Burnley and is only contracted to stay at the club until the end of the season. Dunne has established himself as the first choice defender and losing him in the summer would be a big miss for Jack Ross.
Alim Ozturk and Glenn Loovens haven’t played much, and we don’t see them having a significant impact in the first team next season. This is especially true if the Wearside outfit moves to the Championship.
So one can say the club is going to have two reliable defensive options in the summer in Baldwin and Flanagan. Signing a defender is likely going to be on the agenda of the club, and the latest piece of news regarding Sykes committing his future with his current club is a blow for Jack Ross. Despite that, Ross should go for the defender even if it means paying some transfer fee for the player.
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