Sunderland determined to stand firm on Josh Maja despite reports of cut-price January sale

Josh Maja is yet to agree a new Sunderland contract, but senior sources at the club have rejected suggestions he has been offered to Premier League clubs.

Monday, 24th December 2018, 10:11 am
Updated Tuesday, 8th January 2019, 16:04 pm

Reports in the national media have said that the Black Cats are looking for £1.5million from a sale in the January window.

Stewart Donald and Jack Ross have both said recently that they remain hopeful a new deal can be agreed.

Josh Maja.

Donald has also since taken to Twitter to rubbish the national reports, he tweeted: "We are very hopeful he will stay. He has said he wants to and we r finishing off negotiations. We got more than that for Joel so why on earth would we sell Josh for less it’s absolute rubbish !!"

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The Black Cats are conscious that Maja could agree a pre-contract deal with a foreign club from January 1st, a move that would see little return in the way of compensation.

Maja could of course join another British club on a free in the summer. Sunderland would be entitled to some compensation.

There has been significant interest in Maja from the Championship, with a host of clubs lining up a potential move.

But Sunderland are eager not to lose their top scorer and one of the league's best finishers ahead of a critical five months for the club.

It would likely take at least double the quoted price for an offer to be considered.

Promotion to the Championship would be a significant financial boost to the club and Maja's goals could be vital to that.

The 19-year-old is currently struggling with illness and is a doubt for the visit of Bradford City on Boxing Day.

He has himself said that he would like to help take the club back to the Premier League.