Sunderland AFC news round-up: Transfer latest, David Moyes on Jermain Defoe clause, support hailed

Jordan Pickford
Jordan Pickford
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Sunderland have today been liked with two players, while there is reported interest in midfielder Jan Kirchhoff from the Turkish top flight.

Kirchhoff, who is out of contract in the summer, is a target for Galatasaray according to fresh reports.

The midfielder has been out injured for long spells this season and his 18-month deal runs out in the summer.

Manager David Moyes has already confirmed that there will be no contract talks with any of the players in the final months of their deals until the club's league status for next season is known, with Sunderland seven points adrift of safety.

Meanwhile, the Mirror claim that West Ham, Stoke, Everton and Sunderland are all chasing Dynamo Kiev and Croatia defender Domagoj Vida.

The defender has long-been linked with a move to Wearside and Sunderland have previously scouted the centre-back.

Sunderland have also been linked with a move for Danish midfielder Lukas Lerager, the 23-year-old has scored six goals in 29 appearances this season for Zulte Waregem.

Swansea City, Nice and Bordeaux have also been linked.

Jermain Defoe can leave on a free if Sunderland are relegated:

The 34-year-old has a clause in his contract which means he could leave for nothing in the summer should the worst happen and Sunderland be relegated.

Moyes wasn't forthcoming when asked about the situation and says his focus is firmly on keeping the Black Cats up.

When asked about the clause in Defoe's contract, Moyes said: "The only thing I can clear up is we are not down and we are not planning to go down, we are planning to stay up."

Sunderland's chances of securing their top-flight status may be significantly clearer in a week or so with games against Watford, Leicester City and Manchester United.

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Sunderland support hailed:

Sunderland will be backed by their twelfth sold-out away following of the season at Watford - and Jordan Pickford has thanked them for their support ahead of a crunch week.

The Black Cats are seven points adrift of safety going into a busy week with the Watford game followed by Tuesday night’s trip to Leicester City before the visit of Manchester United next Sunday.

Pickford believes they are all "winnable" games, with Sunderland likely to need at least five - possibly six - wins from their remaining 10 games to stand a chance of staying up.

The in-demand Washington-born stopper has made the number one spot his own this season.

And he is fully aware of what the fans demand from the players as they battle against the drop.

"It is down to us to perform and to get the fans going," said Pickford, who has been away with England Under-21s during the international break.

"Being a Sunderland lad and knowing what the fans like we have got to make sure we give them as much as we can.

"It has got to be the best for them because when they are going they can be like an extra player for us.

"Every week away from home they sell out and they are fantastic – we have got to give them the energy, desire and work rate that they ask for.

"We have got three big games in the next week but we believe they are three winnable games.

"If we turn up on our day with the fans behind us we believe we can pick up wins and that has to be our aim now," he told the club website.

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