According to the Sunderland Echo, the Imps are one of several clubs thought to be weighing up a move for 28-year-old Alex Rodriguez.
Rodrigues, also known as Alex Gorrin, is a tough-tackling central midfielder who would perfectly fit our needs. He’s a holding midfielder, so if Mark Kennedy does prefer the 4-3-3 with a four in front of his defence, then Gorrin is perfect. He’s 28, so younger than Liam Bridcutt, but there’s a caveat; he’s been out since October with an ACL injury. His contract is set to expire, so he would be available on a free transfer, and we’re not the only ones reported to be interested either; Wigan, Burton, Sunderland (if they don’t go up) and Portsmouth (obviously) are also apparently in the mix.
As a youngster, the tough tackler was on the books of Tenerife, before hooking up with Sunderland. He was released by the Wearsiders in 2014, joining New Zealand-based A-League club Wellington Phoenix. He returned to Europe with the Portuguese side Boavista, but didn’t settle and headed to Romania to feature for Sepsi OSK. He switched to Motherwell next and earned a reputation as a top midfielder in the SPFL, ensuring Karl Robinson took him to Oxford United.
He’s been at the Kassam for three years now, playing 79 League One matches, but only 13 this season due to his injury. It looks likely he’ll be released as Oxford once again look to plot a course into the top six, and that has put a host of clubs on alert. He is certainly a Danny Cowley type of player, and we’ve seen his like at Burton Albion too. The main issue for Imps fans will be that recent ACL injury, and the (sometimes incorrect) observation that we only sign crocks.
However, I’ve always been a huge fan of Gorrin. In fact, when I first saw this news piece and read it was a Rodriguez, I was tempted to brush it off as nothing, but when I realised he was also known as Gorrin, it piqued my interest. In his first season at Oxford, in particular, he was a real asset. He’s busy, much like McGrandles, but he’s a dedicated holding midfielder who is aggressive out of possession. In fact, I’d liken aspects of his play to 28-year-old Michael Bostwick; not quite as tough-tackling (let’s face it, a motorway pile-up isn’t quite as tough as a Bostwick tackle), but perhaps a little more refined in possession.
Even with the ACL injury, if we did sign Alex Gorrin, I’d be utterly delighted, as he’s the committed midfielder that we need 35 games out of in the league.