Sport Soccer

Thursday 22 February 2018

Interest from Sunderland leaves Forde with Ireland dilemma

Sunderland are contemplating a move for David Forde
Sunderland are contemplating a move for David Forde
Daniel McDonnell

Daniel McDonnell

SUNDERLAND are contemplating a move for David Forde as they seek to fill the void left by the loss of Keiren Westwood for the remainder of the season.

Gus Poyet is looking for another 'keeper to provide cover for Vito Mannone and Millwall netminder Forde is part of the discussion after a shoulder operation confined Westwood, his rival for the Irish number one spot, to the sidelines.

The Black Cats are considering up to five options, but Forde is out of contract in the summer and would be available for a small fee.

Millwall are keen to keep the Galwegian, but the 34-year-old is mulling over his options as his next move could prove to be the most financially significant of his career.

The dilemma for Forde is that he could earn better money in the Premier League without the guarantee of regular action and that might have implications on his international standing. Celtic are still keeping tabs on his situation, but they will only make a move if Fraser Forster leaves the club.

Meanwhile, Hull are confident of landing Shane Long (below) before the weekend. The saga continues with the Tigers seeking to reach agreement on a fee before opening discussions with the Tipp native who will take a bit of convincing.

Steve Bruce is prepared to tempt the 26-year-old with a three-and-a-half-year contract and a £40,000-a-week pay packet. Local media in Hull have reported that Bruce, already buoyed by the addition of Nikica Jelavic, is confident of landing Long.

Elsewhere, Derby have told Conor Sammon he still has a future at the club, but Championship promotion-chasers Brighton would like to add him to their ranks before the transfer window closes.

Sammon has started just one league game for the Rams this term. The Dubliner has come off the bench in 13 of their last 16 outings and has made a total of 20 sub appearances this term.

However, Derby first-team coach Paul Simpson has indicated that the 27-year-old is in their plans, despite the loan capture of Patrick Bamford -- an Ireland target who recently made his England U-21 debut.

Closer to home, Longford have made another significant move as they prepare for a promotion tilt from the First Division this season.

Fresh from the signing of Stephen Rice, they have snapped up another member of the Shamrock Rovers' squad that qualified for the Europa League in 2011.

Pat Sullivan, who scored the stunning goal in Belgrade that sent the Hoops into the group stages, has agreed terms with the Midlanders. It means the pair will lock horns with the reserve side of their former employers in 2014.

Irish Independent

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