Birmingham City set to swoop for Sunderland winger

Will Buckley in action
Will Buckley in action
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Will Buckley is set to be the next fringe player to leave Sunderland in the January transfer window, with Birmingham City leading the race for his signature.

The winger is surplus to requirements at the Stadium of Light and is available on a loan or permanent deal this month.

Boss Sam Allardyce needs to offload some of his unwanted squad players to help bolster his transfer and wage kitty.

And with Liam Bridcutt having already extended his loan at Leeds United until the end of the season, Buckley looks set to follow him to the Championship.

Ex-Brighton & Hove Albion man Buckley had a spell on loan at Leeds earlier this season but returned to Sunderland the day Bridcutt joined the West Yorkshire outfit.

Buckley struggled to make an impact under Steve Evans, making just four appearances.

And with no prospect of any first team football under Allardyce, Buckley knows his future lies elsewhere.

Birmingham have emerged as the leading contenders to end Buckley’s Sunderland stay, with the Midland outfit keen to add him to their ranks, with Nottingham Forest also understood to be tracking the 26-year-old.

Blues boss Gary Rowett is looking for a replacement to fill the boots of Demarai Gray who this week signed for high-flying Leicester City.

The 19-year-old was highly-sought after but the Foxes won the race to sign him.

And now Buckley - who has managed just 10 starts since joining Sunderland - could be heading to St Andrew’s to replace him.