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French Defender Favours English Move

The president of Le Havre has said that amid interest from Juventus, hotly-tipped fullback and strong Sunderland target Benjamin Mendy prefers a move to England.

Michael Kienzler

A strong candidate to fill the vacant left-back position in recent weeks has been the highly-sought Le Havre fullback Benjamin Mendy, and whilst things appeared on the outside to be cooling a little, the player himself and his club's president have both been talking to the press and made some comments which has made ours and Sunderland's ears prick up.

In speaking with French radio station RMC, president Jean-Pierre Louvel said of his player;

We are talking to clubs and the talks with English teams are going better than others.

He is most likely going to go and play in England.

Suggesting that any potential moves to stay in France with either Lyon or Marseille, who have both been linked, or even Italian giants Juventus are dead in the water.

To back up his president, Mendy himself said he is relishing the prospect of playing in England, also telling RMC;

I have always dreamt of playing in England so I am happy to be linked with English clubs.

I know it is a big step to go there straight away, but if you want to progress in Europe you need to play at the top level.

It's known that we are one of the interested parties, while it has also been suggested that Cardiff City are another fan of Mendy.

Any purported fee would be in the region of £2m for the 18-year old with 1-year left on his current contract. Some reports last night claimed that Juve had a big of £2.5m rejected, with Le Havre "holding out for more", obviously not taking into account the fact he is a year away from walking out for free.

El-Hadji Ba also arrived at Sunderland from Le Havre recently, and with a similar age and ability, his tribunal was set reportedly at the £400,000 mark. So a fee in the region of £2m would be fair for acquiring the services of Mendy.

Flush with cash from the Simon Mignolet deal, we can expect interest in top targets to be stepped up immediately by Paolo Di Canio and his crew, as in the wake of the Belgian's departure the manager promised this money would help us land top targets.

The ball is very much now in the hands of the club to get deals over the line.