By Kevin Phillips

15th Jun, 2021 | 4:00pm

Phillips in awe of Sunderland after plot to sign 'great' Ross revealed

Kevin Phillips has claimed Aberdeen teenager Ethan Ross could be “a great signing” for Sunderland this summer.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the Stadium of Light legend said it is imperative that Lee Johnson’s side strengthen across the midfield with a number of first team players set to be released.

This site revealed on 11 June that Sunderland and Blackburn Rovers are plotting a move to sign Ross, 19, from Aberdeen.

The midfielder is out of contract at Pittodrie this summer and could leave as a free agent if he does not put pen to paper on the new deal Aberdeen have offered him.

The Black Cats are expected to be in the market for midfield reinforcements with Max Power, Josh Scowen, Grant Leadbitter and Chris Maguire set to be released at the end of this month.

Phillips claimed “it is a great sign” that the club are looking to invest in young players.

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“It is vitally important that they strengthen the midfield in the summer,” he told Football Insider.

“They need a couple across the midfield really when you think of the players they have let go.

“I really like the sound of this player. He is young so he would be hungry and willing to listen to the advice Lee Johnson and his staff give him.

“It is a great sign that they are going down the route of youth. I know you need experience but these young players can give you that little bit extra on the training ground sometimes.

“I think Ross could turn out to be a great signing if they can get it done.”

Ross made five appearances for the Dons during the 2020-21 campaign with his one start coming in the Scottish FA Cup.

He spent just over three months of last season on loan with Raith Rovers, where he contributed two goals and three assists in 15 appearances.

In other news, Phillips shares ‘massive’ Hume verdict after key Sunderland update.