Why Portsmouth are ahead of Peterborough and Sunderland in race for Bristol City's Sammie Szmodics - but Championship sides are keen

Pompey have made enquiries about Bristol City's Sammie Szmodics.

Sunday, 6th September 2020, 11:45 am

But the attacking midfielder has interest from Championship clubs, which is proving a stumbling block in a potential switch to Fratton Park.

Szmodics moved to Ashton Gate last summer from Colchester but struggled to establish himself.

The 24-year-old was limited to just four appearances for City, with just one start in the second tier.

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That led to Szmodics going out on loan to Peterborough in the January transfer window, after Pompey had been considering a move for him.

The former Braintree loanee hit the ground running at London Road.

He registered four goals and three assists in 10 outings for the Posh before the 2019-20 campaign was curtailed amid the Covid-19 crisis.

Szmodics has been training with Bristol City during pre-season.

Bristol City's Sammie Szmodics. Picture: Julian Finney/Getty Images

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However, he was omitted from the Robins’ match-day squad for their opening game of the campaign on Saturday – a 2-0 win against Exeter in the Carabao Cup first round.

If Szmodics is again surplus to requirements at Ashton Gate then it’s likely he’ll head out on loan and is hopeful of joining a Championship side.

But The News understands that if Szmodics has to drop to League One then he would prefer to join Pompey than return to Peterborough or move to Sunderland, who he’s also been linked with.

He believes he could feature regularly at Fratton Park and make the number-10 role his own.

Pompey currently have Andy Cannon, Gareth Evans and Marcus Harness as options to play in the hole.

But after missing out on Cameron McGeehan to KV Oostende, Kenny Jackett has been looking to recruit more of an attack-minded midfielder.

In addition, Peterborough have brought in Ryan Broom from Cheltenham for an undisclosed fee, whose best position arguably is the number-10 role.

Posh boss Darren Ferguson has admitted he'd been keen for Szmodics to return.

Pompey have already completed one piece of transfer business with Bristol City this summer.

Left-back Cameron Pring arrived on a season-long loan at PO4 from the Robins on Tuesday.