D-day for N’Diaye – and Ba’s set to go too

Alfred N'Diaye (blue strip) battles for Sunderland in last week's friendly against Vitoria Setubal
Alfred N'Diaye (blue strip) battles for Sunderland in last week's friendly against Vitoria Setubal
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ALFRED N’DIAYE is due to make a decision on his future in the next 24 hours after Sunderland accepted a bid from Real Betis.

The Spanish outfit have been in talks with Sunderland throughout the summer over re-signing N’Diaye after the midfielder spent the second half of last season on loan with the side who finished bottom of La Liga.

Betis upped their original £1.5million bid last week after proposing an initial payment, followed by a subsequent fee when they earn promotion back to the Spanish top flight.

Sunderland have accepted that offer and, after N’Diaye’s agent held discussions with Betis this week, the Senegal international is expected to decide on the proposed move today, although there has also been an interest from fellow Spanish side Celta Vigo.

“Alfred is thinking about his future and Real Betis is one of the possibilities,” N’Diaye’s brother and agent Bakary Ciss told the Echo.

“Both clubs have reached an agreement and the player will make a decision very shortly.”

N’Diaye, signed by ex-Sunderland boss Martin O’Neill for £3.7million in January 2013, has featured in five of the Black Cats’ six friendlies so far this summer.

But after tellingly opting against recalling N’Diaye from a loan spell at Turkish side Eskisehirspor back in January, Sunderland head coach Gus Poyet has not viewed the 24-year-old as part of his long-term plans.

This week’s £10m capture of midfielder Jack Rodwell has pushed N’Diaye further down the pecking order.

And even before the signing of the England international, Poyet refused to offer any guarantees when asked directly whether N’Diaye had a future at Sunderland.

“If you think about the central midfielders I can play at the moment – Jordi Gomez, Seb Larsson, maybe (Emanuele) Giaccherini – aside from Alfred, there is nobody else,” Poyet said about N’Diaye’s inclusion last week.

“The only other thing I could do is to change the system and play Liam (Bridcutt) and Lee (Cattermole) together, but I don’t want to do that.”

N’Diaye’s fellow midfielder El-Hadji Ba is also on the verge of leaving Sunderland after a loan bid – with a view to a permanent deal – from French top flight side Bastia was accepted by the Black Cats.

Sunderland want Ba, who has impressed during pre-season, to get regular first-team football, but are prepared to offload the 21-year-old permanently if they can turn a profit on last summer’s signing.

That will leave Danny Graham, Modibo Diakite, Cabral and David Moberg Karlsson as the remaining players who Sunderland are pro-actively looking to offload this summer.

None of the quartet were included in Sunderland’s pre-season trip to Portugal and have been told they can find new clubs.