Sunderland have been credited with a long-term interest in Ayr United striker Lawrence Shankland. A recent report (by The Scottish Sun) reaffirmed Sunderland’s interest in Shankland.
The Scottish striker has confirmed that he will be leaving Scottish Championship side Ayr this summer. And a host of clubs are expected to take a punt on him.
Shankland would be a risk for Sunderland due to his lack of experience in England. But Jack Ross will know him well from his knowledge of Scottish football.
And Shankland could be a gamble worth taking, especially as he is a free agent. Alongside Will Grigg and Charlie Wyke, Sunderland could have the firepower to launch a promotion bid.
Shankland’s goalscoring record cannot be ignored. He has consistently scored goals in the Scottish leagues and shown that he needs to be given a chance at a higher level.
This season, the 23-year-old scored an impressive 34 goals in just 41 games with eight assists too. That took his total tally to 61 goals and 24 assists in 73 games for Ayr.
Having proven himself in the second tier of Scottish football, it is time for Shankland to step up; this could be a move to the Premiership or a transfer to an English club.
Sunderland’s play-off final loss will still be a disappointment. But Ross needs to focus on the 2019/20 season and getting Sunderland back to the Championship.
A bargain swoop for Shankland could be a wildcard masterstroke that gives Sunderland that extra advantage in next season’s promotion push.