Sunderland’s 20-year-old graduate of the Academy Of Light, Denver Hume, is out of contract in the summer, and despite manager, Jack Ross, insisting he wants the player to stay, no deal has yet been agreed.
The youngster has certainly had an up and down year, which saw him break into the first team, then suffer an injury nightmare, only to recover and play at Wembley.
Yet, despite Ross’s pleas to get a deal sorted for the Northumberland born full-back, none has been forthcoming, to which the manager admitted he was “frustrated” about.
He told the Newcastle Chronicle: “There’s no new news on that. I’m a little frustrated it hasn’t been concluded.
“From my side, it’s never been an issue because I’ve always wanted him at the club. It’s not as though it is just because he has come back into the team, all the way through his injury I have been pushing this.
“I’m not avoiding responsibility but it comes out of my hands to a degree, it’s other people at the club’s responsibility to get everything agreed and hopefully that will be done soon because he is a good player.
“I’ve spoken about him often enough and I would love him to be a part of what we are trying to do here.”
One factor could be that Hume, or his agent, is waiting to see how the season pans out, before committing his immediate future to the club.
Should the Black Cats fail to secure promotion, he may be thinking about testing the waters elsewhere, in a bid to get a move to a Championship or SPFL club.
If that is the case, then Sunderland face the prospect of losing another of their talented youth players, following hot on the heels of Josh Maja’s move to Bordeaux in January.
Of course, the club sold Maja, as they did not want to lose the player for nothing when his contract expired in the summer.
But, even if Hume had expressed a desire to leave — which Ross intimated he has not — Sunderland were not able to cash in on him, due to his injury.
It is precisely these types of scenario that make it so essential that Ross ensures promotion from League One at the first attempt.
However, it may be that negotiations regarding a deal are in the pipeline and just need the finer points ironed out.
The fans will not want to see another of their promising youngsters leave, and while it would not appear to be the end of the world if he did, it would continue a worrying trend.
What are your thoughts about Denver Hume’s future, Sunderland fans? Should the club be doing more to tie down your younger players? Let us know your thoughts…