Manchester City attacker Adam Johnson’s wages are likely to torpedo any hopes Sunderland might have of signing him this summer.
The Sunderland-born winger could well leave the Etihad Stadium in the next few months after losing out on a Euro 2012 place with England, simply because he has not played enough football over the course of the season.
But should he ask and be allowed to leave the Premier League champions, he will be far too pricey for Sunderland, with City likely to ask in the region of £10m and Johnson’s £85,000 per week wages being massive stumbling blocks.
It has been suggested the ex-Middlesbrough man might have to cut his wages to £60,000 to join Sunderland, but the reality is he would have to halve them at least and it is unlikely the 24-year-old will do that.
Johnson has fallen out of favour with Mancini and could well leave but if he does so, Liverpool are a far more realistic destination than his hometown club.
Meanwhile, another out-of-favour player – Sunderland deserter Asamoah Gyan – has been linked with a potential move to Turkish club Galatasaray.
The striker was on loan to United Arab Emirates side Al Ain all last season and they remain firm favourites to sign him permanently.
Some serious haggling is expected to take place over the next few weeks to decide his future – which is expected to be away from the Stadium of Light – but Al Ain remain the most serious candidates to get his signature.
And if that deal happens, Sunderland will recoup the vast majority of the £13m they spent to bring him into the club in the summer of 2010.