Journalist Luke Hatfield reckons that West Brom could receive interest for Sam Johnstone in January to avoid a potential "ruck" in the summer.
The England goalkeeper has started all but one Championship game for the Baggies this season but is out of contract next summer.
What's the latest news with Johnstone?
With Arsenal, Tottenham and West Ham all interested in Johnstone's signature last summer, it appeared that he'd played his last game for West Brom.
However, despite setting an asking-price of just £10m, the Hammers signed Alphonse Areola from PSG, whilst Spurs opted to bring in Pierluigi Gollini on loan from Atalanta.
Read More - January Transfer Window 2022: When does it open, when does it close and which players are going to move?
And with Arsenal buying Aaron Ramsdale from Sheffield United, Johnstone ended up staying with the Baggies despite the London rivals being able to sign him for an extremely reasonable price.
But Johnstone's future in the Midlands remains uncertain. Unless he signs a new contract before next summer, the former Manchester United shotstopper is expected to leave.
It leaves West Brom with two options, either cash-in on Johnstone, who's valued at £7.2m by Transfermarkt, in January or keep him and allow him to leave for free at the end of the summer.
Hatfield reckons the former is more likely to happen, with several clubs likelier to be interested next summer when Johnstone is available for nothing.
What did Hatfield say?
He told GIVEMESPORT: "With his contract situation, it wouldn't surprise me if teams maybe test the water in January to avoid that rush in the summer if he does see his contract out at Albion and has numerous options."
The Football Terrace: Check out Terry's EXCLUSIVE interview with the one and only Sam Allardyce...
Could Johnstone leave in January?
There aren't many Premier League sides that are in desperate need of a new goalkeeper, which makes a January exit difficult to see.
According to Sky Sports, Southampton, who're likely to offload number two Fraser Forster next summer, are keen on signing Johnstone, although first-choice Alex McCarthy is enjoying a promising season and he's unlikely to come in as a back-up.
West Ham also remain keen on the 28-year-old because current number one Lukasz Fabianski is out of contract as well, although they could see him as a future number one for next season.
Perhaps the likeliest outcome is for Johnstone to wait until the summer, where he will have more time to decide and more options, with him being available on a free.News Now - Sport News