When Ethan Robson signed a new two-year deal at Sunderland, it seemed that he would not be moving to Scotland in the summer.
According to The Sun, Old Firm rivals Celtic and Rangers were both keeping a close eye on the 21-year-old midfielder who, until very recently, had looked set to leave the Stadium of Light when his contract expired at the end of this season.
But Sunderland instead looked to have pulled off a coup in seemingly ensuring Robson committed his future to their club despite the fact they are staring down the barrel of relegation into League One.
Though, considering that the cash-strapped, debt-ridden Black Cats are in desperate need of money to bring in new players, they will need to part with some of their more sellable assets this summer.
Robson is one of those. Sunderland so far haven’t been able to find buyers for Lamine Kone or Jack Rodwell while Didier Ndong’s continued omission at Watford suggests it is very unlikely Javi Gracia’s side would want to make his loan move permanent.
As a result, there is a chance Sunderland could be forced to cash in on players like Robson, his new deal ensuring they would not lose him for free and instead receive a fee closer to his market value of £2 million, The Sun adds. And they could really do with a decent windfall.
There may still be hope, then, for both Celtic and Rangers.
Celtic are famed for building a side around young talent and Brendan Rodgers, who has accelerated the development of Moussa Dembele, Kieran Tierney and co at Parkhead, could be the man to help Robson fulfil his potential.
Rangers, meanwhile, are rising fast with an exciting, youthful side winning plenty of plaudits. Robson would fit right in.