The Gossip: Sunderland Cool Hunt For Strikers

Marco Luzzani

Every Sunday, we take a look at the week's gossip with an analytical eye. This week it was all about trying to tie up loose ends and restarting the search for a left back.

It almost seems that the press are running out of new players to link Sunderland with these days. The gossip seems to have slowed a little but there is still plenty to get our teeth into. First - the formalities.

Valentin Roberge (Maritimo)
Mobido Diakite (Lazio)
Diogo Viana (F.C. Penafiel)
Danny Rose (Tottenham)
Emmanuel Cascione (Pescara)
Danilo D'Ambrosio (Torino)
El Hadji Ba (Le Havre)
Mauro Zarate (Lazio)
Bas Dost (Wolfsburg)
George Mandjeck (Auxerre)
Charlie Austin (Burnley)
Alfred Finnbogason (SC Heerenveen)
Greg Sandomierski (Genk)
Tom Allan (York City)
Salif Sane (Nancy)
Cabral (Basel)
Lucas Orban (Tigre)
Gary Hooper (Celtic)
Fraser Forster (Celtic)
Milos Krasic (Fenerbache)
Wilfried Bony (Vitesse)
Grant Holt (Norwich)
Andreas Weimann (Aston Villa)
Paulinho (Livorno)
Nacho Scocco (Al Ain)
Reto Ziegler (Juventus)
John Guidetti (Manchester City)
Josuha Guilavogui (Saint-Étienne)
Morgan De Sanctis (Napoli)
Luis Pedro Cavanda (Lazio)
Joseph Alfred Duncan (Inter Milan)
Alessandro Rosina (Siena)
Jonathan Biabiany (Parma)
Benjamin Mendy (Le Havre)
Scott Parker (Tottenham)
Johan Elmander (Galatassaray)
Abel Hernandez (Palermo)
Daniel Moberg Karlsson (IFK Göteborg)
Remi Gomis (Valenciennes)
Matej Vydra (Udinese)
Mejdi Traoui (Espérance de Tunis)
Jozy Altidore (AZ)
Jermain Defoe (Tottenham)
Vito Mannone (Arsenal)
Jérémie Aliadière (Lorient)
Jeroen Zoet (PSV)
Ibrahima MBaye (Inter)
Daniel Bessa (Inter)
Gino Peruzzi (Vélez Sarsfield)
Callum McManaman (Wigan)
Tom Huddlestone (Tottenham)
Kristoffer Nordfeldt (Heerenveen)
Matt Ritchie (Bournemouth)
Chung-yong Lee (Bolton)
Robert Acquafresca (Bologna)
Charis Mavrias (Panathinaikos)
Emanuele Giaccherini (Juventus)
Przemyslaw Tyton (PSV)
Maxi Lopez (Catania)
Innocent Emeghara (Lorient)
Bastian Oczipka (Eintract Frankfurt)
Christiano Biraghi (Inter)

4 more names this week then, taking our total to 62. Impressive.

The name that has dominated talk on Wearside this week is that of Emanuele Giaccherini. The Juventus midfielder was considered to be one of the more fanciful names to be linked this summer but is expected to be confirmed a Sunderland player next week.

A fee has been agreed with the Turin giants for the Italian international - as confirmed by Juve coach Antonio Conte - and Giaccherini will now travel to Sunderland's temporary training base in Italy to undergo a medical. He is already thought to have agreed terms.

A few questions have been raised over the perceived delay in completing the transfer, but there appears to be nothing sinister about it. The player has been on holiday following his involvement in the Confederations Cup as well as becoming a father over the last few days.

Any lingering doubts about were surely alleviated by Juventus general manager Guiseppe Marotta, who insisted that it was Giaccherini himself who had been pushing for the move.

In Giaccherini's transfer to Sunderland, the will of the player had priority over the club's.

Emanuele evaluated, not only the economic aspects but also the standing he will have at Sunderland, and it was a challenge he decided to accept. We have gone along with his wishes.

Next week looks to be especially busy, with Vélez Sarsfield confirming via their official site that long term right back target Gino Peruzzi is finally due to head to Sunderland to complete a move on Tuesday. He is expected to be joined by Charis Mavrias in putting pen to paper over the next few days.

Strikers have again been linked aplenty lately, but I think we can just about ignore them - at least until there is some movement out of the door. In Altidore, Fletcher, Wickham, Ji, Sessegnon, and Graham, the club are carrying plenty of options so there probably isn't room for another right now.

That isn't to say there may be changes to the forward line possible later on in the window, of course.

Much more interesting is the perpetual search for a left back. It seems the original list of targets has led to dead ends, with Benjamin Mendy joining Marseille and Lucas Orban procrastinating over his future.

Inter Milan youngster Cristiano Biraghi has been mentioned in Italy, but his agent has denied any knowledge of a potential deal. The local press have thrown the name of Bastian Oczipka into the pot, crediting Sunderland with a string interest in the Eintracht Frankfurt defender. That is certainly believable, though you would suspect he would be a tough player to persuade the German club to part with.

Remember you can keep up with all the stories as they happen via our DEDICATED SUNDERLAND TRANSFER CENTRE.

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