Speaking after the 3-0 pre-season win at Hartlepool, Gus Poyet made it clear that Sunderland needed to sign a left-back as soon as possible;
We've got specific targets and it's taking a little bit too long. We have time for one or two specific players, but the rest, we don't have time.
We don't have a left-back. We need a left-back now. We need pace, which we have been looking for for the last year.
Poyet had targeted Marcos Alonso for the left-back berth but was handed a set-back this week when the Spaniard went on Fiorentina's pre-season tour of South America. With Alonso seemingly out of the picture for the next couple of weeks, it appears as if Sunderland may have made a move for Chelsea left-back Patrick van Aanholt.
According to Jim White of Sky Sports News, the two clubs are in talks as they attempt to agree a fee for the Dutch international;
Hearing that #Chelsea left-back Patrick van Aanholt close to joining #Sunderland tonight. Clubs trying to agree fee.— Jim White (@JimWhite) July 24, 2014
The 23-year-old has spent the last couple of seasons on loan at Eredivisie side Vitesse but hopes to leave Stamford Bridge permanently this summer;
Where will I play next season? I don't know yet. It definitely won't be at Chelsea. I am done here.
The player only has one year left on his contract at Chelsea and should be available for a knock-down fee but with no senior left-back at the club, it could be a case of van Aanholt coming in to compete with Alonso, rather than as a direct replacement.
Time for the obligatory YouTube compilation, this time it includes the player's entire involvement in a game against PSV last season:
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