Michael Appleton’s squad looks set to receive a new addition in the imminent future, with talkSPORT’s Alex Crook reporting that we are close to snaring Josh Griffiths on loan from West Brom.
We’ve been linked with Griffiths for much of the summer, with the need for a keeper obvious after releasing Ethan Ross and seeing Alex Palmer return to his parent club. Griffiths, who has been picked for England Under 21s, is a hot prospect who had been eyed by Portsmouth and Sheffield Wednesday.
He proved himself an exciting prospect with a loan deal in League Two last season and is ready to step up for another stint in senior football. The Hereford-born keeper emerged from the Baggies youth academy after joining at the age of 10, and spent last season on loan at Cheltenham, where he lifted the League Two title, keeping 23 clean sheets in 50 appearances. That form earned him the Young Player of the Year award at Whaddon Road and led to an even bigger honour shortly after. He was called up to the England under-21 squad for their Euros group stage campaign in March, although he didn’t appear.
It is also reported the keeper has signed a new four-year deal with the Baggies before moving to us, in much the same way as TJ Eyoma did before his loan spell last season.
It now appears that we have won the race against The Owls, as well as Pompey (who seem to be linked with everyone we are interested in). It certainly solves our keeper issue for now, as we’d have Sam Long and Griffiths in the squad. However, it would not surprise me to see us sign an older stopper to provide competition for Griffiths, and loan our own prospect out, maybe to the National League, for a season of men’s football.
Whether that is the case or not remains to be seen, but with rumours around Chris Maguire, Lee Bonis and Teddy Bishop yesterday, things are beginning to heat up as Michael looks to add further new faces to the sole income so far, Lewis Fiorini.