Grant McCann refuses to comment on Sammie Szmodics as speculation over move to Blackburn Rovers continues

Peterborough United boss Grant McCann has refused to comment on the current situation linking Sammie Szmodics with a move to Blackburn Rovers.

By Ben Jones
Saturday, 30th July 2022, 6:02 pm
Updated Saturday, 30th July 2022, 6:05 pm
Sammie Szmodics received a standing ovation when he was substituted against Cheltenham. Photo: Joe Dent.
Sammie Szmodics received a standing ovation when he was substituted against Cheltenham. Photo: Joe Dent.

Szmodics was a surprise starter against Cheltenham in the 3-2 come-from-behind win on Saturday (July 30) after such strong speculation about a move back to the Championship materialised on Friday. When he was substituted in the 78th minute, he was given a standing ovation from the travelling fans, who sang “we want you to say.” He applauded the fans and looked to tear up.

Reports are that the club have accepted a £2.5m offer for the forward, who now has to agree terms at Ewood Park.

Chairman Darragh MacAnthony refused to comment on the speculation, simply stating that the player was available for selection.

McCann was also coy, choosing instead to praise the attitude of the 26-year-old.

He said: “I won’t comment on speculation but what I will say is that Sammie’s second half performance was sensational. He led the press at the top end of the pitch with Marriott and Jonno and he’s such a grounded boy.

"He’s always been dedicated to this football club as you’ve seen over the years; since I’ve come in he’s been first class.

“What will be will be.”

While Szmodics was a surprise starter, Kwame Poku was a surprise absentee after his impressive performance against Hull last week. McCann revealed that he suffered a “freak accident” kicking a ball in training on Friday morning and has been sent for a scan.

Nathan Thompson missed the game entirely after limping off during the Hull friendly. Joe Ward missed that match but was drafted back in to sit on the bench as Posh lacked right back options. Ward later came on to play the whole second half, providing two assists in the impressive comeback; something McCann hopes will not damage him in the long term.

He added: “Hopefully it’s not too bad (Poku injury). He went for a scan yesterday and we’re waiting for the results.

“Nathan was touch and go. Joe Ward was also touch and go about whether he would play at all today.

“He’s trained one day after a thigh problem but we made a call that, given were short in the defence, that maybe he could give us a bit at the end. I’m hoping there’s no implication from that 45 minutes.”