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League One transfer round-up: Sunderland eye move, Crowley set for Cheltenham contract, Peterborough outcast joins Portsmouth squad

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Things are starting to heat up in the transfer market ahead of the new EFL season in just over a week – and many League One sides have been getting busy as they prepare to finalise their squad for 2021/22.

For some, including Ipswich Town and Portsmouth, they have already managed to get quite a few deals over the line and are set to be in good shape going into the next campaign.

But for others, including previous promotion favourites Sunderland, they have found it hard to get going in the transfer market but even for Lee Johnson’s side, things could start to move for them in the next week or two as they try to rebuild their central midfield area and find a replacement for Charlie Wyke.

This promises to provide plenty more League One transfer action in the coming weeks.

And with these latest developments, we take a look at some of the most recent deals done and potential moves still to come in the third tier as clubs in the EFL are set to enter the final month of the window.

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Sunderland set to move for O’Donnell

Soccer Football – Euro 2020 – Group D – Croatia v Scotland – Hampden Park, Glasgow, Scotland, Britain – June 22, 2021 Croatia’s Josko Gvardiol in action with Scotland’s Stephen O’Donnell Pool via REUTERS/Stu Forster

Football League World understands Sunderland are set to move for Motherwell right-back Stephen O’Donnell, who impressed many with his performance against England at this year’s European Championships.

The 29-year-old is likely to come in as a replacement for Conor McLaughlin who was released by the Black Cats this summer – and currently believe they will be able to get him for under £500,000.

Whether Motherwell would entertain that bid remains to be seen, but it could turn out to be one of the signings of the summer if they can bring the Scottish international to the Stadium of Light.

Cheltenham Town set to offer Crowley a contract

Soccer Football – Championship – Birmingham City v Hull City – St Andrew’s, Birmingham, Britain – June 27, 2020 Birmingham City’s Dan Crowley celebrates scoring their second goal , as play resumes behind closed doors following the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) Action Images/Andrew Couldridge

23-year-old Dan Crowley is currently training with newly-promoted League One side Cheltenham Town and was part of their squad in last night’s friendly against Hereford, as per Gloucestershire Live.

He turned out to be a regular from the bench for Hull City when he was shipped out on loan to the Tigers by Birmingham City in the second half of last season but failed to earn a new deal at St Andrew’s and was released on the expiration of his contract this summer.

Only a couple of days ago, he was reported to be on trial with fellow third-tier side Doncaster Rovers after former club Hull cooled their interest in the midfielder.

But with this latest development, his future may now lie in Gloucestershire under Michael Duff as they look to utilise their momentum and establish themselves as a League One side.

For Crowley with his experience in the second and third tiers of English football, it could be the ideal opportunity for him to become a key player and kickstart a stalling career.

According to reports this morning, he is now set to be offered a contract at the Jonny-Rocks Stadium.

Peterborough outcast named in Portsmouth friendly squad

Soccer Football – League One – Portsmouth v Accrington Stanley – Fratton Park, Portsmouth, Britain – May 9, 2021 General view of the stadium before the match Action Images/Andrew Boyers

Peterborough goalkeeper Dan Gyollai was in Danny Cowley’s squad for their pre-season friendly against Chelsea’s U23s team, as per The News.

New signing Gavin Bazunu made his debut in between the sticks against the young Blues’ squad – but another shot-stopper in Gyollai is also said to be in talks over a potential move to Fratton Park and is likely to earn a deal if he impresses the Pompey boss.

The Hungarian was transfer-listed by the Posh in the summer and after recruiting David Cornell on a free transfer from Ipswich Town to compete with first-choice stopper Christy Pym, he looks set for the exit door at London Road.

With this, any deal done for the 24-year-old is likely to be a cheap one and considering he’s now part of the first-team squad on the south coast, this signing could be completed imminently.
Gyollai will come in as a replacement for Duncan Turnball who had an unsuccessful spell at Fratton Park and was officially released this month after spending just over a year in England.

Watson joins MK Dons

Soccer Football – Carabao Cup First Round – Portsmouth v AFC Wimbledon – Fratton Park, Portsmouth, Britain – August 14, 2018 Portsmouth’s Jamal Lowe in action with AFC Wimbledon’s Tennai Watson Action Images/Peter Cziborra

Reading academy graduate Tennai Watson has joined MK Dons on a permanent deal following his release from the Royals this summer, linking up with Russell Martin’s side for the upcoming season.

Despite initially showing promise under then-manager Jaap Stam for the Berkshire side back in 2016, he failed to get ahead of Andy Yiadom and Chris Gunter in the pecking order at the Select Car Leasing Stadium and was left out in the cold by numerous managers before finally leaving the club permanently this summer.

The 24-year-old has previously had loan spells at AFC Wimbledon and Coventry City, but didn’t make much of an impact as either club and will now be looking to settle down in Milton Keynes with a first-choice right-back spot up for grabs.

Three clubs make double signings on Tuesday

Soccer Football – Championship – Middlesbrough v Nottingham Forest – Riverside Stadium, Middlesbrough, Britain – March 2, 2020 Nottingham Forest’s Alfa Seemed in action with Middlesbrough’s Lewis Wing Action Images/Lee Smith

We couldn’t end this round-up without mentioning three sides made double signings yesterday – all of whom will want to be competing for promotion next term.

Ipswich Town brought in Rangers man George Edmundson and Barnsley forward Conor Chaplin for undisclosed fees, taking their number of signings in this window to ten amid a major rebuild at Portman Road.

Meanwhile, Sheffield Wednesday secured loan deals for goalkeeper Bailey Peacock-Farrell and midfielder Lewis Wing, possibly the Owls’ best day in the window thus far after spending the early stages of the summer under a transfer embargo.

Both performed regularly in the Championship earlier in their playing careers, something that can only help Darren Moore’s side as their prepare for the new season.

Lastly, Lincoln City have also got in on the action, recruiting released Bristol City winger Hakeeb Adelakun on a free transfer and agreeing a fee with Ipswich Town for midfielder Teddy Bishop, who was transfer listed by Paul Cook after the end of last season.

After spending time training with the Tractor Boys’ Under-23s, he will be glad to make a fresh start with the Imps.


A 21-year-old Reading FC fan and writer who is set to graduate from the University for the Creative Arts in the summer. Other topics written about include politics, mental health and education.

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: League One transfer round-up: Sunderland eye move, Crowley set for Cheltenham contract, Peterborough outcast joins Portsmouth squad

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