Phil Brown looking to keep released Sunderland defender John Egan

John Egan
John Egan

SOUTHEND boss Phil Brown has confirmed his interest in re-signing released Sunderland defender John Egan.

Egan is one of a number of members from Sunderland’s Under-21 squad who are leaving the club this summer after the Black Cats opted against handing the centre-half a new contract.

The 21-year-old was highly rated when he was coming through Sunderland’s youth ranks, but his progress was halted by a horrific double leg break sustained during a loan spell at Bradford City.

Egan joined Southend on loan in February and made 15 appearances for the Shrimpers as they reached the League Two play-offs.

And South Shields-born Brown is eager to keep hold of both Egan and on-loan Liverpool defender Jakub Sokolik, although it is understood that there is significant interest in the Sunderland man.

“We’ve put a marker down with both John and Jakub and made reference to the fact that we would very much like them to stay but I’m sure they could have a few offers,” said Brown.

“They’re both from good stock having been with Sunderland and Liverpool respectively but because of how well they did for us I’m sure they will be attracting interest from elsewhere.

“We’ve been given permission to talk to the players by their clubs and we’re chasing their agents at the moment too.

“We could be in the driving seat because they’ve been here already but at the same time if a Championship or League One club comes in to sign them I would fully understand if they went there instead to play at a higher level.”