Who will sign Sunderland’s £30m star Jordan Pickford? We assess Liverpool, Everton, Man United, West Ham and Arsenal’s credentials

Sunderland goalkeeper Jordan Pickford.
Sunderland goalkeeper Jordan Pickford.
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When David Moyes intimated that Sunderland would be looking for a fee around the £30million mark for Jordan Pickford, many raised eyebrows.

For a goalkeeper with no international caps, just one full season at Premier League level, in a side limping to relegation, it seemed an exorbitant fee.

Many pointed out, too, that such a fee would likely break the world record, Gianluigi Buffon’s switch from Parma in 2001 costing Juventus €53 million.

Already, however, the transfer window is seeing eye-watering sums being spent and it is likely that the record for a goalkeeper will be broken at least once.

Pickford’s future is linked with a number of other stoppers across the continent, and the Black Cats are right to demand a high price.

We take a closer look at some of the key players to see how things may develop.

Could it be that Pickford stays after all?

MANCHESTER CITY

City may have kept close tabs on Pickford but in the end have opted to splash £35 million on Benfica stopper Ederson Moraes.

Ederson is the same age as Pickford and similarly only has one real season of top tier experience behind him.

That in all likelihood will end their immediate interest in Pickford, even though Willy Caballero has left the club with Claudio Bravo and Joe Hart likely to follow.

Pickford’s proficiency with ball at feet, however, means he is never likely to be off their radar.

Sunderland will also no doubt point to the Ederson fee to strengthen their claims for £30 million.

EVERTON

There have been conflicting reports regarding an £8million bid from the Toffees but they are certainly interested in his signature.

Neither Joel Robles nor Maarten Stekelenburg convinced when given the jersey last season and so the potential to be Number One at a top half club would surely appeal to Pickford.

Clubs higher up the chain could also be happy to see him progress at Goodison Park before revisiting in a few seasons time.

Whether Everton will meet the asking price is another matter, already said to be switching their attentions to Gent goalkeeper Lovre Kalinic.

LIVERPOOL

Liverpool have been linked with a battery of goalkeepers throughout the season, including Pickford and his goalkeeping idol Joe Hart.

Jurgen Klopp, however, has insisted that he will not seek to replace either Loris Karius or former Black Cat Simon Mignolet.

Mignolet in particular finished the season in excellent form.

ARSENAL

David Ospina is thought to be keen on a move away from the Emirates but even if he does depart, Petr Cech and Wojciech Szczesny, soon to return from a loan at Roma, means that Wenger is unlikely to move for a keeper.

The Arsenal boss said himself after the 2-0 win over the Black Cats: “He had an exceptional night.

“We had 36 shots on goal, the highest ever in the Premier League and their keeper saved 11 of them, he has done extremely well.

“We have plenty of goalkeepers. We have Petr Cech, David Ospina, Wojciech Szczesny on loan at Roma, who had an exceptional season at Roma and Emiliano Martinez.

“If there is one thing we don’t need to buy it is a goalkeeper.”

MANCHESTER UNITED

United could be the dark horse in the race for Pickford’s signature.

Much depends on the future of David de Gea, linked with a move to Real Madrid for a fee well in excess of £60 million.

The Spaniard’s back-up, Sergio Romero, excelled when called upon last season and so the Old Trafford side might see him and a rising star like Pickford as an excellent combination.

They were thought to be interested in a January swoop before the 23-year-old picked up an injury at Old Trafford.

WEST HAM UNITED

Another Premier League certain to be in the market for a goalkeeper.

Slaven Bilic seemed to lose faith in Spaniard Adrian but his replacement, Darren Randolph, has struggled. Pickford could be a target but so too could Arsenal stopper Szczesny.

Could that then force Arsenal into the market?

It could quickly become a merry-go-round which should leave the Black Cats in a strong position when it comes to Pickford.