SUNDERLAND have upped their interest in Ipswich’s prospective superstar Connor Wickham but are still expected to lose out to one of the Premier League giants for the teenager’s signature.
Steve Bruce rates the 18-year-old as the best talent in England for his age and would love to have him at the Stadium of Light although the likelihood is that Wickham’s will follow the tracks of other former shining lights of the lower leagues like Gareth Bale and Theo Walcott, going straight from a struggling outfit to one of England’s elite sides.
Wickham was a boyhood Liverpool fan and the Reds are believed to be in pole position if a move happens this summer, although Arsenal and Spurs are also said to be ready to bid.
Sunderland though have stolen a march on all of them by showing their hand early and are ready to pay more than £10m for the 6ft 4ins forward.
The Black Cats are able to offer Ipswich money up front and the Blues would not have to hand over to the Wearsiders the £1.5m still owed to Sunderland for former striker Michael Chopra who was signed by the Blues earlier this month.
Full story in Wednesday’s Mail