Sunderland manager Jack Ross being eyed by West Brom

According to The Sun on Sunday, (14/04 page 61) Sunderland manager Jack Ross is on the Midlands club’s radar as they seek to replace Darren Moore.

What’s the word?

Ross left St Mirren in the summer to take over the Black Cats and he has them currently sitting in third place with 80 points, two behind Barsnley but with a game in hand.

The Scotsman has also led his team to the final of the Checkatrade Trophy only to lose on penalties to Portsmouth, Lee Cattermole missing the vital spot-kick.

Sunderland are well placed for automatic promotion and this form has seemingly led to West Brom holding an interest in making him their manager.

The Black Cats have been hard to beat and this would no doubt play a part in West Brom wanting the 42-year-old to take them over next season.

But Sunderland have drawn far too many games, 17 in all, and if he were to take over the Midlands club he would have to convert those stalemates into wins.

How would Sunderland deal with Ross leaving?

Ross has built a squad capable of promotion, but it would need a lot of work if they were to be promoted to the Championship next season.

Looking at the current squad, Aiden McGeady, Bryan Oviedo, Grant Leadbitter, Chris Maguire and Will Grigg are the only players who are good enough for the Championship – they do have some talented youngsters but they lack second-tier experience, except George Honeyman.

If a switch to the Hawthorns materialises, Ross won’t be there to oversee that potential transition, and a new manager with different ideas may well disrupt the process.

But Sunderland fans would not be able to begrudge Ross if he did move to West Brom because they are better placed to get back into the Premier League than their North East counterparts. Surely the 42-year-old would relish a chance to manage at the peak of the English game.