SUNDERLAND appear to be cooling their interest in Greek winger Charis Mavrias.
The Black Cats agreed a £2.5million fee with Panathinaikos a fortnight ago and, at that stage, it looked like the deal might be completed quickly.
Mavrias was tipped to travel to England, undergo a medical, settle personal terms and have every chance of being on the plane to Hong Kong this weekend with the rest of the Sunderland squad.
But so far the deal has not progressed.
And it now appears likely Sunderland will shelve their interest in the highly-rated teenager.
The £6.5m arrival of midfielder Emanuele Giaccherini from Juventus this week may have influenced Sunderland’s thinking on the matter, with the Italian international expected to be deployed on the left wing in the new season – Mavrias’s position.
On top of that, young prospect David Moberg Karlsson has impressed since joining Sunderland and he, too, can play on the left wing.
Mavrias was just one of a number of possible targets pursued by Sunderland this summer and, despite a fee being agreed, sources close to the potential transfer suggest the Black Cats may decide not to take their interest any further.
The move is not yet dead in the water and could be revived if more players depart Wearside before the transfer window closes at the end of August and Di Canio’s options open up.
But, as things stand, it seems increasingly likely that Mavrias will not be joining the Black Cats.
Sunderland have already signed nine players this summer, with Argentinian right-back Gino Peruzzi expected to become the 10th new arrival.
Peruzzi flew into the North East this week along with officials from his club Velez Sarsfield, to undergo a medical and finalise personal terms over his £3.3m move.
Sunderland were hoping to tie up the move in time for him to fly out with the rest of the squad taking part in the Barclays Asia Trophy.
The Wearsiders meet Tottenham in Hong Kong on Wednesday.