Sunderland’s League One rivals drop a cryptic hint over deadline day bids for Will Grigg

Two of Sunderland’s League One rivals have dropped cryptic hints over failed moves for a striker - after being linked with swoops for Will Grigg.

Tuesday, 4th February 2020, 8:00 am
Updated Tuesday, 4th February 2020, 2:04 pm

The Northern Ireland international was linked with a host of clubs over the month having found himself down the pecking order at the Stadium of Light, with Shrewsbury Town and Oxford United two of the clubs understood to be keen on the forward.

And both clubs have now spoken of their failed pursuits of a ‘big name’ player on deadline day, with many speculating the man in question is Grigg.

Shrewsbury CEO Brian Caldwell revealed that his side had worked up until the final hours of deadline day to try and bring in a ‘high-profile’ striker - who he claims was keen to head to Greenhous Meadow.

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Sunderland striker Will Grigg

But a deal couldn’t be done after the player’s club saw another striker leave, which led many to conclude that the Shrews were pursuing Grigg given that Sunderland lost fellow forward Marc McNulty depart for Hibernian.

“Even up until 8pm on Friday night, we were working on one who was very keen to come,” explained Caldwell.

“High-profile, big name, international player.

“He was one that was a potential but he ended up, because of the other club’s circumstances, they couldn’t let him go out because they had lost another striker.

“That was another unfortunate one, and was another kick in the teeth.”

Meanwhile, Oxford United boss Karl Robinson was far more forthcoming in declaring his interest in Grigg, stating on the eve of deadline day that he wanted to bring the striker - whom he had worked with at MK Dons - to the Kassam Stadium.

And speaking to BBC Oxford on Saturday morning, Robinson explained how the club had missed out on a pair of ‘big name’ signings.

“We pushed the boat out for two big players, but it wasn’t to be the case,” he said.

“I’m not frustrated, it is what it is, and the most important thing is the fans.

“I’d rather have no signing and keep the fans coming in the building.”