Sunderland striker target linked with big-money move as Celtic and Rangers eye swoop

Former Sunderland target Lawrence Shankland is interesting both Rangers and Celtic after a goal-laden start to the campaign.

Monday, 30th September 2019, 5:45 pm
Updated Monday, 30th September 2019, 5:45 pm
Sunderland were linked with striker Lawrence Shankland over the summer
Sunderland were linked with striker Lawrence Shankland over the summer

The Scottish striker was heavily linked with the Black Cats over the summer, having been earmarked as a potential target for Mark Campbell had his attempted takeover of the club come to fruition.

But despite heavy interest from England, Shankland joined Dundee United after his contract at Ayr United expired - and has hit the ground running at Tannadice.

And having netted 15 times already this season, reports in Scotland suggest that both Celtic and Rangers have been extensively scouting the forward ahead of a potential swoop in January.

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It’s understood that a fee in the region of £2million could be enough to prise Shankland away from the second tier side.

Meanwhile, elsewhere in League One, Gillingham boss Steve Evans has apologised to supporters after his side were heavily beaten by in-form Oxford United.

Pressure has mounted on Evans in recent weeks, with supporters calling for his head after the side were dispatched 3-0 at the Kassam Stadium.

“Firstly I apologise, he said, speaking to the Kent Messenger.“I don’t know if half of them were on their way back to Kent at half-time,” said the former Leeds boss.

“It was the worst half my team has played for a long, long time. You have that as a manager.”

Portsmouth boss Kenny Jackett, meanwhile, saw the pressure facing him ease slightly after a 1-0 win against Bolton Wanderers.

But the Pompey chief now wants his players to build on that positive result as they look to mount a promotion push.

“Now it needs to be a building block, a stepping stone to where we want to get to,” said Jackett, speaking to the News.

“You can’t get full confidence straight away – it doesn’t always happen that way. You have to work hard at it persevere and make sure you can get a result to build on it.

“Confidence is hard-earned – no-one is going to give it to you and you have to graft for it.”