Former manager Sam Allardyce has claimed that Sunderland turned down a big money offer from Leicester City for current Everton ace Jordan Pickford, whilst he was in charge of the club.
The star has enjoyed a fine past couple of years and is now happy at Everton and is currently England’s number one goalkeeper.
But his career might have panned out differently, with Allardyce saying Steve Walsh had offered ‘an awful lot of money’ for the talented stopper.
Allardyce, who managed the Black Cats from October 2015 to July 2016, gave Pickford his debut after recalling him from a loan spell at Preston North End in January.
Speaking on talkSPORT, he said (quoted by The Chronicle): “We got offered an awful lot of money by Leicester City from Steve Walsh when I was at Sunderland.
“So it was no surprise when Walsh was director of football at Everton that he bought Pickford when Sunderland were relegated [in 2017].
“There’s not a better young goalkeeper around in Europe at the moment.”
Eyebrows were raised when Pickford moved to Everton for £30 million (BBC Sport) but he is certainly looking worth that fee now.
Perhaps Everton fans have Allardyce to thank for not allowing Pickford to leave for Leicester, which would likely have meant the stopper would never have pitched up a Goodison Park.
Walsh’s feeling about Pickford back then has proven to be correct, with the £100,000-a-week star (Spotrac) having emerged as one of the Premier League’s better goalkeepers.