JAMES McFADDEN is set to imminently complete the formalities of his short-term deal at the Stadium of Light.
The Echo revealed last week how free agent McFadden had been offered a two-month contract at Sunderland, which would see the Scotland international sign for the Black Cats until the January transfer window.
Sunderland boss Martin O’Neill expects McFadden, who joined the Wearsiders on trial last month, to be officially confirmed in the next few hours, with a short-term contract providing the 29-year-old with a chance to prove his fitness.
O’Neill said today: “With a little bit of luck, he’ll sign this afternoon - certainly at the latest tomorrow.
“That will be a short-term contract that suits all parties.
“That gives him the opportunity to get fit, join the squad and then try to get into the team.
“The idea of signing him is that he can show what he thinks he’s capable of doing.
“We’ll have to see if it’s the James McFadden of old and if it is, that will benefit us.”
If registered by Friday’s noon deadline, McFadden could be eligible for Saturday’s clash at Stoke City.
But after featuring just twice for Sunderland under-21s in a pair of behind-closed-doors friendlies, McFadden is still short of match fitness after being released by Everton at the end of last season.