Sunderland boss Jack Ross insists that takeover speculation will not distract him from guiding the Black Cats to promotion.
A number of reports in recent weeks have linked various parties with a takeover at the Stadium of Light - with owner Stewart Donald having admitted he is open to fresh investment.
Asian and European consortiums have been linked with bids ranging from £40million to £70million over the summer months with speculation having intensified in recent weeks.
Fresh reports on Sunday claimed that a £50million bid was being prepared, although Donald claimed there was nothing in the claims.
And while rumours continue to rage on, Ross admits that they will not distract him from the task at hand on the field.
Indeed, the Scot admitted it would be a feeble excuse to make for any disappointing results.
"I think it would be quite weak for me as a manager to ever us that type of speculation as an excuse or reasoning behind not winning games," he admitted.
"The players know that I protect them from a lot of things. We only speak about things that are important to us.
"I have a really good relationship with the owner and I've always worked on the basis that if there is ever anything important to tell me, he'll tell me.
"If I don't hear anything then I assume it as is.
"Really, I've not paid too much attention to anything. I've been aware of it, but I've just kind of managed to go about things."