Nathaniel Adjei to Sunderland transfer reports assessed amid Leeds, Middlesbrough, Celtic and Rangers links

Sunderland have been credited with interest in Ghanaian defender Nathaniel Adjei along with other Championship clubs.

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Sunderland have been credited with interest in Ghanaian defender Nathaniel Adjei - but how likely is a move to Wearside? 

The 21-year-old has made 21 appearances for Swedish top-flight side Hammarby this season, while he’s represented Ghana at under-23s level.

What’s been reported?

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Earlier this month, The Sun reported Championship clubs Sunderland, Middlesbrough and Preston were interested in Adjei, while claiming Rangers had sent scouts to watch the player. Swedish outlet Fotbolldirekt have also said Leeds are one of several clubs tracking the defender, who is under contract until 2026 with Hammarby. 

Where does he play?

Adjei, who is listed as 6 ft 1 tall, has predominantly played as a centre-back for Hammarby, while he’s also operated as a right-back.

According to Wyscout, Adjei has won 66.3 per cent of his defensive duels this year, while he’s averaged 4.8 attempted passes into the final third with a 77.6 per cent accuracy.

What’s been said about him?

At Hammarby, Adjei played under Marti Cifuentes, who was appointed as QPR’s new head coach last month. When discussing the defender’s ability, Cifuentes said: “He will develop into a top-notch defender, in my opinion. We know the talent we have on our hands, because he has displayed glimpses of being a top-notch football player.”

Do Sunderland need another defender?

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Given that Sunderland spent some of their summer transfer budget on centre-backs Jenson Seelt and Nectarios Triantis, signing another young central defender is unlikely to be the club’s highest priority in January. Luke O’Nien and Dan Ballard have both performed well this season and have recently signed new contracts on Wearside. 

Even so, Sunderland have spent seven-figure transfer fees on talented youngsters who they feel have a high ceiling, even when they have appeared well stocked in certain areas. They will now have to assess where the squad needs strengthening the most before the transfer window reopens in just over a month’s time.

The Black Cats were looking to sign another holding midfield player over the summer, yet a move didn’t materialise. They may also feel they need more cover in wide areas.

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