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Report: Hearts Defender On Sunderland's Radar

Sunderland are reportedly set to watch a young Hearts central defender in action for Scotland under 21s.

After missing out on the services of John Souttar of Dundee United, who rejected Sunderland to stay with Dundee United despite the clubs agreeing a fee, Sunderland's search for a young central defender looks to be continuing in Scotland with Jordan McGhee of Heart of Midlothian under the spotlight.

According to this morning's edition of The Journal, Sunderland scouts will be present as Scotland under 21s take on Hungary at Tannadice. 17-year-old McGhee is primarily a central defender but has performed well whilst out of position at left back when needed. The youngster has a contract with Hearts until 2015 and has also been scouted by Italian giants Juventus.

Despite not turning 18 until July, the youngster has already made 19 appearances for Hearts since making his debut at the end of last season and since then has been a regular in their first team squad.

McGhee, who has been capped 4 times at under 21 level, is not the only player who Sunderland will be taking an interest in against Hungary, with highly rated Dundee United youngster Ryan Gauld still on their radar. The 18-year-old winger has been dubbed the 'Scottish Messi', has been tracked by clubs from all over Europe, including the likes of Arsenal and Roma, and signed a new 4-year deal with the Tangerines just before Christmas.