BOLO Zenden and Zlatan Muslimovic will NOT be joining Sunderland in the weeks ahead to reinforce Martin O’Neill’s injury-hit squad.
The Dutch midfielder and Bosnia and Herzegovina striker, pictured right, are both free agents and because they do not belong to any clubs are free to link up at any time.
Both would jump at the chance to be part of the revived Black Cats’ success story, but O’Neill told the Echo that any interest in either would not be taken any further.
“We couldn’t sign them, even if we wanted to,” he said.
“Zlatan, we had a look at, inviting him over to train with us and Bolo, we were aware, is ready to play again.
“But you are limited to register only 25 senior players and we used our last two slots up in signing Wayne Bridge and Sotirios Kyrgiakos.
“I think it’s a bit strange that you can’t bring in more players if you have long-term injuries.
“Marcos Angeleri and Wes Brown still counted, even though they have medium to long-term injuries and I don’t know if that should be the case.”
O’Neill says he is content to face the rest of the season with the squad he has, despite not being able to swell it with out-of-contract players or striking reinforcements.
He said: “We know we have to see the rest of the season through with the squad we have and I’m happy to accept that.
“It would have been nice if something could have come of our interest in Kevin Davies.
“He would have offered us something different and I’m sure our squad would have benefited from him being here. Our young forwards could have learned from him.
“But now we have to take the approach that the way any young forward improves is to play regularly and there’s no doubt there will definitely be plenty of playing opportunities for our strikers between now and the end of the season.”
Sunderland’s final 25-man Premier League squad list was submitted on Thursday, and reads: Angeleri, Bardsley, Bendtner, Bramble, Bridge, Brown, Campbell, Carson, Cattermole, Colback, Elmohamady, Gardner, Gordon, Kilgallon, Kyrgiakos, Larsson, McClean, Meyler, Mignolet, O’Shea, Richardson, Sessegnon, Turner, Vaughan, Westwood.
Players under the age of 21 do not need to be included in the 25-man squad, meaning Ji Dong-won and Connor Wickham are automatically eligible.