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  • Writer's pictureDaniel Stacey

Championship Transfer News and Rumours Round-up

Everton striker Ellis Simms is a target for Sunderland, Stoke City, and Ipswich Town this summer. Simms, 22, spent the first half of last season on loan at Sunderland netting seven goals and Tony Mowbray is keen to make him a permanent member of the side. Stoke boss Alex Neil is the man who signed Simms for the Black Cats and is keen on another link up, whilst newly promoted Ipswich are happy to spend big this summer in order to stabilise themselves back in the second tier.

Should Sunderland miss out on Simms they may turn their attention to French starlet Matthis Abline. The Rennes striker, 20, spent last season on loan in Ligue 1 at Auxerre but could be tempted to the Championship to be part of Sunderland’s exciting young team. There are already some French youngsters in the Sunderland squad so settling in shouldn’t be a problem, and with Ross Stewart currently the Black Cats’ only striker it’s vital they add more depth up top.

 

Leicester City look set to lose impressive trio James Maddison, Harvery Barnes and Wilfred Ndidi following relegation into the Championship. Sales are needed for the Foxes who have the biggest wage bill in Championship history currently, and top earners will be flogged for quick cash. Maddison is wanted by Newcastle and Tottenham but neither have matched the £50m+ asking price, Barnes is fancied by London clubs West Ham, Tottenham and Arsenal and Ndidi is attracting interest from the middle east. New boss Enzo Maresca will want them out of the door quickly so he can reinvest the funds into building a squad capable of bouncing back to the Premier League.

 

Birmingham City have signed Tyler Roberts from Leeds United for a fee in the region of £200,000. Roberts has struggled for form in the past few seasons and had an injury-hit year at QPR last term, so he’ll be hoping a move to the West Midlands will revitalise his career. Blues have more ability to spend following their takeover and windfall from Jude Bellingham’s transfer to Real Madrid and have several spaces in their squad to fill. Japanese international forward Koji Miyoshi is being linked with a move from Royal Antwerp as John Eustace looks to bolster his attacking options.

Managerless Leeds United may turn to Patrick Viera to take the reins at Elland Road. Viera has been out of a job since he departed Crystal Palace last season and is reportedly keen to hold talks with Leeds officials about the vacancy. Leeds are looking for a forward-thinking manager with a nice style of play and Viera fits that profile, but there are some questions about his experience and suitability to a promotion chasing side in the Championship as he’s never been in that position before.

Sheffield Wednesday, another managerless Yorkshire club, are reportedly exploring Steven Gerrard as a potential option to replace Darren Moore following his shock exit from Hillsborough. Gerrard may be tempted to drop into the Championship given the lack of interest in his services since leaving Aston Villa and Wednesday will be keen to avoid paying a compensation fee to a manager employed elsewhere. Gary O’Neil, Nathan Jones, and former boss Carlos Carvahal are also names being linked to the Owls.

 

Bristol City starboy Alex Scott is still expected to leave Ashton Gate this summer with a £25m move into the Premier League looking increasingly likely. West Ham are very keen on the 20-year-old midfielder and could use funds from the sale of Declan Rice to bring him in. Wolves are another club who really like Scott but may be held back by FFP restrictions, even with Ruben Neves’ imminent sale to Saudi Arabia. Bristol City see Derby’s Jason Knight as Scott’s replacement and could spend up to £2m on him. Stoke and Ipswich are also interested in the Irish midfielder.

Watford have pulled off an impressive coup with the signing of Rhys Healy on a free transfer from Toulouse. Healy, 28, spent three years in France and was one of the hottest free agents on the market after his 37 goals in 69 games on the continent. Valerian Ismael will be keen to build a squad in his image and there’s work to be done in that regard, but this is a statement signing for the Hornets.

 

Blackburn Rovers have completed the loan signing of Arnor Sigurdsson from CSKA Moscow. The Icelandic international scored in the Champions League against Real Madrid in 2018 and has the ability to be a star in the Championship this season. Rovers will be desperate to right the wrongs of their January window and more signings like this will go a long way to rebuilding the faith in their recruitment team.

Plymouth Argyle have made their first signing as a Championship club in the shape of Spanish defender Julio Pleguezuelo. Pleguezuelo, 26, turned down the chance to stay at FC Twente in the Eredivisie and several other options in the UK and Europe in favour of joining the Pilgrims and is a huge upgrade on their current Centre Back options. Plymouth are favourites for relegation but more signings like this will give them a real chance of survival in the second tier.

 

Daniel Stacey of talkingwigan.com

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