SAM Gallagher is close to a return to Blackburn Rovers if reports in the national press are to be believed.

The Southampton striker, who spent a season on loan at Ewood Park two years ago, is set to link up with Tony Mowbray again on a permanent basis for a fee in the region of £5 million.

Mowbray has been busy trying to strengthen his squad and has so far recruited Stewart Downing from Middlesbrough and Bradley Johnson from Derby County.

With David Raya joining Brentford, a new goalkeeper is still Mowbray’s top priority and the Ewood Park boss has stated he wants an experienced number one.

But recruiting 23-year-old Gallagher - who played six times for the Saints last season - would bolster an attacking line-up that already includes Danny Graham, Adam Armstrong, Ben Brereton, Dominic Samuel and Joe Nuttall.

Gallagher played 47 times for Rovers in the 2016/17 season but his 12 goals could not save Rovers from relegation.

The forward spent the folllowing season on loan at Birmingham City.