Recent reports have suggested that Sunderland are closing in on a move for highly-rated Morecambe defender Connor Pye, with the Black Cats said to have ‘agreed a deal’ to bring the 18-year-old to the Stadium of Light this summer.
The promising full-back had been made ‘available for transfer’ by the Shrimps, along with a host of other names, with manager Derek Adams suggesting that budget restrictions had forced them into sanctioning his exit.
The young Englishman – who only signed his first professional contract back in January – has made just a solitary appearance for the League One outing thus far, with the suggestion being that he will be a player for the future were he to join the northeast side.
The indication is that it will be a bright future for the emerging left-back, however, having previously been the subject of interest from Premier League outfit Everton, such is his exciting potential.
While not likely to be a player who makes an instant impact on manager Alex Neil’s first-team set-up, the signs are that Pye will be a figure to keep an eye on as the years progress, having even been likened to Liverpool sensation, Andy Robertson, due to his ‘energetic playing style’.
That is glowing praise indeed such is the talent of the Scotland skipper, with Robertson having arguably blossomed into the “best left-back in the world” – according to pundit Kevin Phillips – due to his stunning displays at Anfield.
Plucked from relegated outfit Hull City back in 2017 by Reds boss Jurgen Klopp, the 28-year-old has since enjoyed a meteoric rise to becoming a crucial figure in the German’s setup, notably winning the league title and the Champions League in recent years.
A potent attacking threat, the one-time Dundee United man notably ranks second in Premier League history with regards to assists made by a defender, with only one-time Toffees man Leighton Baines (53) having provided more goals than his tally of 49 assists.
Having a Robertson-esque figure in his side would no doubt be a notable coup for Neil, with the former Preston North End boss currently having just Dennis Cirkin to call upon as a genuine left-sided option.
Equally, Pye’s ability to feature both in midfield and full-back should make him a suitable candidate to slot into the manager’s preferred back three formation as a wing-back.
As the Liverpool man’s remarkable story indicates – having risen up from the lower leagues of Scottish football to becoming an invaluable asset on Merseyside – a gem can emerge from anywhere, with the Morecambe prodigy potentially set to be the next big thing.