Poyet desperate for signing ahead of Portugal trip

Sunderland manager Gus Poyet on the bench at Hartlepool United last night. Picture by Frank Reid
Sunderland manager Gus Poyet on the bench at Hartlepool United last night. Picture by Frank Reid
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GUS POYET hopes Sunderland will have at least one fresh face among their ranks by the time they fly out to Portugal tomorrow.

The Black Cats’ head coach has grown frustrated by the lack of further incomings at the Stadium of Light since the capture of free transfers Costel Pantilimon, Billy Jones and Jordi Gomez at the start of the summer.

Sunderland fly out to the Algarve tomorrow for nine days for their pre-season tour and Poyet had hoped to use the time on the Continent to work with his new-look side.

But Poyet is keeping his fingers crossed that he will have new signings to work with in Portugal and hopes one deal will be wrapped up within the next 24 hours, with another two to follow at the weekend.

Fabio Borini is unlikely to be in that trio, with the Italian still in America with Liverpool, but Sunderland have also been pursuing last season’s loanees Marcos Alonso and Santiago Vergini, plus Atletico Madrid’s Cristian Rodriguez, who is thought to be a genuine target.

“I’m waiting and waiting, which is not nice,” said Poyet.

“You’re expecting to do a couple of deals, but they’re not happening.

“People say don’t be anxious or nervous.

“I think there will be at least one in by tomorrow and I hope at the weekend we can have three in.

“But the word I’m saying is ‘hope’.

“It’s a matter of time, but, as the days go past, that becomes difficult.

“We are waiting, we are desperate to do something in the next few days because we are going to Portugal and we need to have as many players as possible in place by the time we get there.”

Poyet has also suggested that Sunderland may have to look at alternatives, if progress cannot be made with their principal targets.

Borini falls into that category, although Poyet remains hopeful that Sunderland can agree personal terms with the Italian after Liverpool accepted the Black Cats’ £14million offer last week.

When asked about Borini, Poyet said: “I think we need to be honest.

“The more time that goes past, it looks to me like we have less chance.

“Some people think the opposite. The more players Liverpool sign, then there is more chance.

“Let’s see who is right and wrong.

“We’ve got specific targets and it’s taking a little bit too long.

“We have time for one or two specific players, but the rest, we don’t have time.

“We don’t have a left-back. We need a left-back now.

“We need pace, which we have been looking for for the last year.

“We need a couple of midfielders too after we lost Craig Gardner, Jack Colback and Ki.

“There are things we need to do.

“It will be a real shame if we go through this week and those players are not right.”