West Bromwich Albion are keen to sign John Swift as Steve Bruce needs goals and creativity in midfield. The 26-year-old has scored 11 goals with 13 assists in 38 Championship games this season and will be available on a free transfer when his Reading contract expires, but a recent report suggested the Baggies weren’t as close to procuring his signature as they’d hoped.

Steve Madeley of The Athletic wrote on Monday that West Brom were ‘optimistic’ about signing Swift. But Jonathan Low of Berkshire Live says Reading are making a ‘last ditch’ effort to keep him at the Madejski Stadium. They’re trying to tie him down a new deal, but there are several reasons why their attempt will fail.

Reading must trim the wagebill from £21m to £16m, so Swift would have to accept a paycut to stay on. The Royals were nearly relegated this season too, so the 26-year-old might feel the grass is greener on the side. Reading have 14 players out of contract this summer, so an exodus would kill any chances of a better 2022/23 campaign.

West Brom want to push for promotion next season and Swift would be a regular in midfield, so why wouldn’t you make the switch? Reading may try to hand him a new deal, but it’s hard to see why he’d accept.

In other news, West Brom should consider Ryan Fredericks