Sunderland are confident of wrapping up deals for midfield pair Yann M’Vila and Leroy Fer in time for them to be in contention for the start of the season.
The Black Cats have made progress in taking their number of summer signings to half a dozen, with deals for both M’Vila and Fer expected to be completed by the middle of this week.
Fer will add a much-needed goal threat to Sunderland’s midfield
French international M’Vila is expected to arrive on Wearside today for a medical after Sunderland reached an agreement with Russian club Ruben Kazan, which is likely to be a loan deal with a view to a permanent switch.
Defensive midfielder M’Vila has a chequered history off the field and had a huge bust-up with Kazan, yet is regarded in France as a big talent; one who has previously been on Liverpool’s shopping list.
Fer will arrive on a season-long loan from relegated QPR, with the Championship outfit eager to remove the Dutch international from the wage bill - as they similarly did with defender Steven Caulker joining Southampton last week.
The move is purely a loan, with no provision to make a deal permanent for a player who joined QPR in an £8million move from Norwich 12 months ago.
But Fer - also linked with West Ham last night - will add a much-needed goal threat to Sunderland’s midfield, with M’Vila a defensive-minded player.
Sunderland remain in the hunt for a striker, with Connor Wickham on the verge of joining Crystal Palace, yet head coach Dick Advocaat is delighted with the work being done in the transfer market by sporting director Lee Congerton and owner Ellis Short.
Advocaat said: “We are where we are, but I think the chairman is doing great.
“He has been really great in terms of the support he has given us, because it is not just about bringing players in, he has also had to work with some of the things that have been here for the last couple of years (wages and outstanding transfer payments).
“So it’s not just about what we do now, it’s also about working through some of the things that were already here.
“He is very willing to do everything he can for the team and he has been very positive whenever we have talked.”
Sunderland are not looking at Blackburn striker Jordan Rhodes or Fenehbahce’s Moussa Sow, despite fresh reports linking the latter with a move to the Stadium of Light.
And while Sunderland are thought to have been offered Brazilian frontman Alexandre Pato, the Black Cats are unlikely to follow up their interest in the former AC Milan man.