Sunderland appear to have moved to solidify their interest in American striker Jozy Altidore.
The AZ Alkmaar striker was revealed last month to be a top summer target and negotiations may be nearing some kind of a breakthrough.
US football journalist Greg Seltzer revealed:
So I told you who is out and was never in for Jozy Altidore. Now, let's get to who really is. His agent has confirmed that of two EPL clubs interested, one of them has moved into deep talks. I can tell you that Sunderland is one of the two - but have not determined if they are the one ahead in the race.
Of those I previously outed as suitors, Lazio remain in and Schalke have dropped out. There is another Serie A club in the scene (and I think I know which one), plus perhaps a couple from the Bundesliga (but they are quickly getting priced out, it seems). Meanwhile, of the four teams that had offers rejected by Altidore, I can confirm Dinamo Kyiv was one. Zenit St. Petersburg showed interest, but it was never serious.
It is understood, however, that the club in 'deep talks' with Altidore is indeed Sunderland, who after confirming three Bosman deals and making progress in their pursuit of Gino Peruzzi and Vito Manonne, are expected to turn their attention to attacking reinforcements.
With some big-name clubs dropping out, and others either priced out or rejected by the player, Sunderland would seem to be in a strong position to complete a deal, particularly with Altidore himself publicly stating his interest in a return the Premier League.
Hopefully there will be some kind of a breakthrough soon.