Sunderland may reportedly now sell Ross Stewart once the summer transfer window opens.
The Lowdown: Promotion push
Stewart has been integral to the Stadium of Light faithful’s promotion push this season, scoring 22 goals and supplying five assists in League One, where he has not missed a single game (Transfermarkt).
Should Sunderland start Stewart?
Black Cats legend Kevin Phillips even went as far as to claim that he has been ‘incredible‘, and his numbers certainly show that, ranking as far and away the squad’s best player according to Whoscored’s match ratings.
The Latest: Interest
Taking to Twitter, The Northern Echo journalist Scott Wilson has revealed that three clubs are now ‘chasing’ Stewart in Glasgow Rangers, Norwich City and Swansea City ahead of a potential move in the summer.
Alex Neil is ‘aware’ of the interest in his talisman, but does not want to be distracted by it as he aims to bring the Wearside club up to the Championship.
However, whether they are promoted or not is ‘likely’ to be the catalyst for any decision on Stewart’s future, suggesting that he could be sold if they do not go up.
The Verdict: Keep
The board must do everything that they can to keep Stewart, even if they end up in League One again next term.
His goals are simply far too important to the team right now – after all, nobody in the squad comes close to his 22, with Everton loanee Nathan Broadhead the next best with nine strikes.
The Scotsman has received no fewer than 11 man-of-the-match awards, more than the next three SAFC players combined (WhoScored).
He also wins more aerial duels and averages more shots per game than his teammates, so replacing everything Stewart brings to the table would be an astronomical task.
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