Date: 22nd June 2011 at 8:13pm
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Sunderland have made what is understood to be the first firm bid for Ipswich Town striker Connor Wickham with an offer of £8 million.

Steve Bruce’s side had been heavily linked with a move for Wickham two weeks ago, with reports suggesting that the Mackems were battling with Premier League rivals Liverpool for the teenager’s signature. Any such reports were shown to be false at the time after the club revealed that no bids had been received, but it is believed that Bruce has now tabled a firm offer for the 18-year-old, potentially sparking a bidding war with other prospective suitors.

Although Wickham recently extended his contract at Portman Road until 2014, the deal is widely thought to include a clause which will allow the England U21 international to hold talks with any club that bids a certain minimum figure, believed to be between £10 million and £15 million. Sunderland’s offer is reported to include several clauses which may subsequently raise the value of their bid above the £10 million threshold, but Wickham is unlikely to move to the Stadium of Light if a rival bid is received from the likes of Liverpool, Tottenham and Arsenal, who were all linked with the striker during last season.

Rumours about Wickham’s future have been spreading for a long time but speculation has grown notably in recent weeks, particularly following the arrival of new strikers Michael Chopra and Nathan Ellington at Portman Road. However, Town manager Paul Jewell has already stressed that Wickham is still very much in his plans for next season.

‘We don’t want to sell Connor Wickham, but if he wants to leave and the right offer comes in then we’ll have to consider it,’ Jewell told BBC Radio Suffolk. ‘But until then – Connor’s never given me any indication he wants to leave – our backs aren’t against the wall, we’re in control of the situation.’

One striker who might not be in Jewell’s plans however is Jason Scotland. The 32-year-old, who only has one year left on his contract, looks a likely casualty of the changes to the Town strikeforce. Sheffield Wednesday chairman Milan Mandaric is understood to have confirmed recent reports linking the Owls with a move for Scotland, whilst yesterday Brighton & Hove Albion were also claimed to be interested in the Trinidad striker.

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9 Replies to “Sunderland Start Connor Chase With £8m Bid”

  • I personally don’t think now is the right time for him to move on, so he would most likely end up disappointing in the Premier League if he did go now. That doesn’t mean to say that he can’t be a big success in the top flight in the future, but I would hope that he stays on for at least one more season – both for his own sake and for Ipswich.

  • If he any ambition he should stay and learn his craft with us and get some serious first team action and then move on for double what Sunderland are offering….

  • I’d be tempted to agree with you, quietman! As much as we could make the profit on him now and get him back on loan as Mark says (which has been mooted on many occasions in the past), I’d still prefer to have him on our books for the time being. If nothing else, we’ve seen in the past few seasons how we’ve become too dependent on loanees; what odds we would get Connor back only for Sunderland to call him back because they suffer another striking injury crisis like this season?!

  • I just think we havn’t ever received really good money for our players and quietman, he could do well next season and we get more cash the next season, or there is the negetive side of the coin, he could not play well and we lose out. I think we should sell him but only for the right price!! 1 player doesn’t make a team!

  • You say we haven’t ever received really good money for our players… I thought over £3m for Jon Walters was ludicrously generous on Stoke’s part last summer!! Heh!

  • Oh absolutely – there were rumours a few weeks ago that Town had turned down a bid from Liverpool believed to be as little as £5.5m. I think that story was revealed to have been a load of rubbish in the end, but even if it wasn’t, that would be a really insulting offer!

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