Sunderland may have to wait for an answer from target Lawrence Shankland this summer, despite reportedly offering him a deal already according to the Shields Gazette.
It’s been widely reported that the Black Cats have offered a deal to the 32-goal striker, who left Ayr United following the completion of his current deal. He’s hot property right now, with Celtic and Rangers amongst his suitors north of the border.
Sunderland have got in first, hoping to steal him away early, but the report suggests they’re going to be kept waiting. It’s suggested Shankland is on holiday and any hope they had of a quick deal has been scuppered with his absence.
Shankland began his career with Queen’s Park, earning a move to SPFL side Aberdeen as a result. He flopped at Pittodrie and spent time out on loan with a number of clubs, including St Mirren who were then managed by Jack Ross.
He excelled with Ayr in the Scottish Championship this season as they pushed for a play-off place and a first appearance in the Scottish top-flight since 1978. They weren’t able to achieve that and they are now going to face a future without their star striker.
This has backfired somewhat on Sunderland. Clearly, an early move was intended to get things tied up and that’s not possible if the player isn’t here.
It could be a ploy to get other interested parties to reveal their stance, but with Shankland out of the country, those other clubs can afford to wait a week or so before making a move.
I suspect he’ll be lured to one of Scotland’s big two, Celtic would be a great move for him if he could get game time. Sunderland might be a big club, but can they offer European football as well as silverware?