QPR have joined Blackburn Rovers in the battle for Danny Batth, with the centre-half looking increasingly unlikely to still be at Sunderland when the transfer window closes at the end of the month.

Batth has entered the final year of his contract at the Stadium of Light, and with the Black Cats not expected to offer a new deal, Tony Mowbray will not stand in the 32-year-old’s way if he is offered the security of a long-term agreement away from Wearside.

Blackburn hold a long-standing interest in Batth, with Rovers officials having held a series of discussions over a possible move this summer.

Jon-Dahl Tomasson is keen to add Batth, who started Sunderland’s Carabao Cup first-round defeat to Crewe Alexandra on Tuesday evening, to his defensive ranks, although Blackburn’s financial position means the Ewood Park club are having to run an extremely tight ship this summer.

That has potentially created an opportunity for QPR to engineer a deal of their own, with last weekend’s defensive opening-day horror show, in which Gareth Ainsworth’s side conceded four goals in the opening 43 minutes against Watford, seemingly having focused minds at Loftus Road.

QPR signed experienced centre-half Steve Cook earlier this week, but with Jimmy Dunne and Jake Clarke-Salter both currently unavailable, they remain on the hunt for another experienced performer at the heart of the back four.


Batth would fit the bill, and with further talks planned for the next 24 hours, there is a chance a deal could be pushed through ahead of QPR’s trip to Cardiff City at the weekend.

Batth is one of three senior Sunderland players to have entered the final year of their current contract earlier this summer who have been linked with possible moves away from the club.

Alex Pritchard and Lynden Gooch are in similar situations, with their respective ages meaning Sunderland are unlikely to be offering them new deals beyond the end of the current campaign.

Like Batth, the pair have been involved in the opening two games of the season, but like their defensive team-mate, Mowbray accepts he could be losing their services over the course of the next three weeks.

“I think my own view is about the individuals, the players,” said the Sunderland boss. “If there’s an understanding that the players are going to leave – either want to leave or feel as though they’re not required – then I think my first thought is always about the human being and their families, and what’s right for them.

“Particularly as you start to tiptoe into your 30s, you need to have contractual situations that are right for the human being. So, I’m supportive of Danny, Alex and Goochy. I think what will be, will be. Let’s see what this next three weeks brings. I, personally, need to be supportive of those players.”