Sunderland move for Derby County striker as manager admits he could leave this month

Sunderland are trying to land Derby County striker Chris Martin on loan, with Rams boss Gary Rowett admitting he could leave.

Thursday, 18th January 2018, 11:22 am
Updated Thursday, 18th January 2018, 11:30 am
Derby County striker Chris Martin.

Follow our live transfer blog here:The Black Cats are desperate to add strikers to the squad this month, with Hull City the visitors to the Stadium of Light on Saturday afternoon.

Sunderland have suffered a blow in their pursuit of Burnley striker Jon Walters, who is injured, and Liverpool teenager Ben Woodburn, who Jurgen Klopp is not currently willing to let leave on loan.

Chris Coleman is a fan of Derby striker Martin, 29, who could leave on loan this window though Sunderland will face fierce competition to land him.

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Martin has made 29 appearances this season, scoring one goal, though a lot of those appearances have been from the bench with only five starts.

Coleman said: "We’ve got to look at that [up front]. We’ve got two experienced players to replace and to help Josh Maja.

"I don’t think we can do anymore than we’re doing to make something happen, we’re fully aware of the seriousness of it."

Martin has fallen behind David Nugent, Matej Vydra and Sam Winnall in the pecking order of forwards at Derby, who have added another striker to the squad in Cameron Jerome.

Former Sunderland striker Darren Bent is another Rams striker who could move on this month.

Rams boss Rowett said: "The reality is that Chris Martin and Darren Bent at some point in this window will want to go and play football.

"I have spoken to those two players about it, they are in agreement with that and it will just be about seeing whether that interest (in them) becomes more concrete.

"We have got good attacking options, different attacking options, and we will probably lose some of those options I would imagine in this window."

As reported by the Echo, Leeds united have been blocked in their bid to sign Martin on loan, with Derby County not willing to let the striker join a promotion rival.

Derby are prepared to let him join another Championship club lower down the table.Asked if Martin wants to go, Rowett told the Derby Telegraph: "I have spoken to him about it at length. I think he wants to go and play football. Obviously, the conversations I have with him will always remain private.

"He is like any good Championship player, they want to feel alive on the Saturday.

"The reality is he is too good a player to not be starting games.

"If there is interest that he thinks is right for him then the reality is he will probably go and play football somewhere else in this window."