Sunderland: Black Cats put on Ryan Porteous transfer alert
Sunderland have reportedly been placed on transfer alert as target Ryan Porteous is set to leave Hibernian in the January window.
The Lowdown: January exit…
Porteous is out of contract at Hibs in the summer, meaning that he can leave as a free agent, or sign a pre-contract agreement with a non-Scottish club in January.
As such, manager Lee Johnson, who used to manage at the Stadium of Light, has admitted that the club will sell Porteous in January for the right price.
The Latest: Sunderland target
As per The Northern Echo, the Wearside club’s recruitment team are ‘keen’ to bolster their defensive ranks in January, and are understood to ‘remain interested’ in Porteous, after being ‘heavily linked’ with a move in the summer.
However, he is also ‘expected’ to be a target for fellow Championship rivals Luton Town and Millwall.
Nonetheless, both Kyril Louis-Dreyfus and sporting director Kristjaan Speakman are ‘keen’ to continue with their policy of recruiting relatively young players who can be developed within the ranks, with Porteous, who does not turn 24 until March, fitting that bill.
The Verdict: No-brainer
Signing a player of Porteous’ quality at his age for a cut-price in January is surely a no-brainer for Tony Mowbray’s side.
Hailed as being a ‘heart-on-sleeve, full-blooded‘ type of defender by former Hibs boss John Hughes, the six-foot-two colossus has been their standout performer in the Scottish Premiership so far this term, ranking highly among his team-mates in terms of average aerial duels won, tackles, interceptions, clearances and blocks per match (WhoScored).
A no-nonsense centre-back, Porteous could thrive in the difficult division that is the Championship, and at 23 years of age, he could be a mainstay in the Black Cats’ backline for years to come.