Sunderland transfer news: Italian duo linked with Celtic and Serie A switches

Borini has struggled in front of goal this season
Borini has struggled in front of goal this season
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Fabio Borini has been linked with a summer to switch to Celtic.

The Italian has scored just one goal for Sunderland this season and is one of many who would be expected to leave Wearside should the Black Cats fail in their battle to beat the drop.

The 26-year-old voiced his frustrations at being used in a number of positions earlier in the campaign but he has been a regular for David Moyes since returning to injury, recently given the chance to play in his favoured centre-forward position.

He was linked with a move back to Serie A in January but his availability is likely to alert Brendan Rodgers, who worked with him in the Chelsea youth set-up and signed him both on loan at Swansea and permanently for Liverpool.

Celtic recently appointed Lee Congerton as their head of recruitment. Congerton also worked with Borini at Chelsea. Celtic will need cover in the inside forward position with Patrick Roberts returning to Manchester City in the summer, the Glasgow club set for another push for the Champions League group stages.

Vito Mannone meanwhile is being linked with a switch to Serie A outfits Genoa and Atlanta.

Watford are also reported to be interested in the 29-year-old, though they already have former Black Cats stopper Costel Pantilimon and Heurelho Gomes on their books. Mannone's future may well depend on Jordan Pickford, who is expected to leave if Sunderland are relegated.

Both players are represented by former Sunderland Director of Football, who recently said a summer move could be in the offing for both.

De Fanti said: "Vito and Fabio are happy playing in the Premier League.

"We often forget that Vito and Fabio have played their entire career in the Premier League, except for one year with Fabio at Roma.

"Italy, however, always remains home and after a while more and more you want to go back. There was something with some top Italian clubs but the conditions were not right. We will see this summer.”