Peterborough United will not panic into replacing Sammie Szmodics but are exploring options

Peterborough United boss Grant McCann has vowed that the club will not panic into replacing Sammie Szmodics but there are plenty of options on the table.

By Ben Jones
Thursday, 4th August 2022, 3:18 pm
Updated Thursday, 4th August 2022, 3:18 pm
Sammie Szmodics acknowledges the Peterborough United fans at Cheltenham. Photo: Joe Dent.
Sammie Szmodics acknowledges the Peterborough United fans at Cheltenham. Photo: Joe Dent.

McCann confirmed to the Peterborough Telegraph earlier this week that the club would seek a replacement for the forward outside of the squad after Szmodics left to join Blackburn for a fee believed to be worth around £2.5m.

The club have had a list of targets drawn up for some time after being aware of Blackburn’s interest for a while but McCann has insisted that the club will not panic.

The club have the option of playing Ben Thompson, Jack Taylor, Joel Randall, Kwame Poku or David Ajiboye in the position until a replacement is signed, a deal McCann does not think is close right now.

The club have until the window closes on September 1 to complete a deal.

McCann said: “We moved on ever since the day he came in on Monday and let us know he was going. He said his goodbyes and we cracked on. The lads have trained really well this week.

“We have got Thompson, Poku, Randall, Ajiboye that can play in the position if needed but we have been exploring our options elsewhere.

“We did know this day would come as Blackburn were coming in quite strong for Sammie. We’ve been working very hard behind the scenes on it but we’re not over-panicking because we know we have plenty of time.

“We want to make sure who we get in fits the culture, the dynamic and is willing to work, run and fight as well as having the ability.

“With any transfer it will take time, there is a lot that needs to happen before it goes through, but we’ve got a lot of good options on the table. We’ve had plenty of agents get in touch, but we’ve got our own list identified by the chairman, recruitment team and my staff and now it’s over to Barry to make it happen.”

Szmodics was a surprise starter for Posh in the win at Cheltenham on Saturday (July 31), given the strength of the speculation linking him with the move to Ewood Park that emerged before the game.

McCann trusted the 26-year-old to give 100 percent for the team, however, and has praised Szmodics’ attitude throughout the process. He also revealed that Szmodics sent him a generous hamper from Harrods to thank him for his support during his time at the club!

He added: “It’s a tremendous opportunity to go and play in the Championship and he’s been a model professional all the way through. We knew about this for quite some time, but he’s just cracked on and got on with it; he’s a great guy to have in the building and on the football pitch but we can’t stand in the way of people, particularly when the offer is good for the club and for Sammie.

“We wish him all the best. He sent me and my staff a nice hamper down from Harrods today, which was really nice of him and it just tells you everything you need to know about him. We wish him the greatest of luck at Blackburn.

“We have got good characters in the squad, good people, the whole group trains well every single day. Obviously, Sammie was one of them, but these things happen in football. It is what it is and we have to move on.”