Sunderland may have to sell striker if serious bid comes in, suggests Poyet

Sunderland manager Gus Poyet has admitted that the club could sell Steven Fletcher.

Steven Fletcher has been linked with a move away from Sunderland this month with Hull City, Celtic and even Tottenham Hotspur being linked with the Scotsman.

Fletcher is currently the Black Cat's top goalscorer in the league this season, with three goals, which sums up the fact that Sunderland have been struggling. Phil Bardsley, Emanuele Giaccherini, and Adam Johnson have scored three goals in all competitions but it is in the league that they need them most.

Currently in last place, four points adrift of safety, can they afford to let Fletcher go?

Gus Poyet had this to say regarding his star striker: "I'm not the type of person to say 'no-one is for sale' and then we sell one. Why? Because every single player has a price."

This will no doubt alert clubs who are monitoring the situation.

In The Daily Telegraph they report Poyet also said that he doesn't want to see Fletcher leave, saying, “He’s our top scorer and he’s the one who is going to score the goals and make the difference."

Sunderland bought Fletcher from Wolverhampton Wanderers in 2012 for £12 million, and they are likely to want to at least recoup that. This could put him out of Celtic and Hull City's price range, but ultimately it could come down to whether Fletcher himself wants to leave. Having suffered relegation with Wolves and Burnley from the Premier League, he could jump ship before he adds a third relegation to his CV.

Fletcher is a great striker and has consistently scored goals in struggling teams, so he should have a lot of admirers. He could be tempted by a move back to Scotland with Celtic. Neil Lennon is looking at strengthening his side over January, and with Georgios Samaras's future is unclear he could bring in Fletcher as a replacement.

Fletcher's agent Scott Fisher said that there is interest from 'top English clubs in Fletcher' but has not received any contact from Celtic. 

Fletcher will of course be tempted to move on if a big club comes in, and it looks as if Sunderland will themselves be tempted to sell if his valuation is met. It could be around £20 million though, and it would represent a bit of a risk following his recent injury problems. 

Tim Sherwood could see him as the ideal forward for his attacking formation though, and Spurs could follow up their reported interest.


image: © Ben Sutherland

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