Southampton are closing in on former Barcelona and Juventus defender Martin Caceres, who had been linked with a move to Sunderland.
The Uruguay international is a free agent after leaving Juventus last summer and is in Southampton for talks and a medical.
Southampton are looking for a centre-back after selling captain Jose Fonte to West Ham, while Virgil van Dijk is out for two months due to an ankle injury.
The transfer window closed last week but clubs can still sign free agents.
Experienced Caceres has not played this season after ending his five year spell at Juventus last summer.
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Meanwhile, legend Gary Bennett has been speaking about the club's January business in a wide-ranging interview with the Echo.
Reflecting on the business done, Bennett said: "I think it surprised people.
"Nobody was expecting anybody to come in, there was talk of signing a centre forward but we were told there was no money at the start of the month.
"To do the business Moyes has done, bringing in Lescott, Oviedo and Gibson is better than what we thought was going to happen."
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And finally, Sunderland Under-23s are stepping up their preparations ahead of a crunch European fixture next week.
Elliott Dickman’s side return to European action when they welcome Athletic Club Bilbao B to Wearside in the quarter-finals of the Premier League International Cup.
The Black Cats host the Spanish side at the Stadium of Light on Wednesday, February 15 (KO 7pm) as they bid to progress to the semi-final stage of the competition.
Sunderland topped group A following two wins and a draw from their opening three fixtures, while Athletic Club progressed after they finished runners-up in Group F behind German side Hertha BSC.