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Roker Round-Up: Latest On Sunderland Head Coach Search and Transfers

What is going on? Dunno really, but here is what others are saying.

Tullio M. Puglia/Getty Images

We all seem to be in a bit of a post-season wind-down right now with Sunderland stuff and there is a certain limbo feel about the whole thing.

No head coach kind of looks like no direction right now. So what's actually going on? We'll sum up as best we can.

Head Coach

This is, without question, the key point right now. That makes it frustrating too, because it's so quiet that it appears that nothing is actually happening at all.

Every day there is apparently a new favourite for the job and a fresh article by local journalists that tell you very little indeed. It can get annoying.

However, no news isn't necessarily bad news. It might be, too, of course, but probably not. The simple fact is that journalists don't know anything about it and yet are still under pressure to fill column inches and hit online traffic targets. They can't say they know nowt, so they just kind of try to authoritatively round-up the rumours.

Personally, I can say that I know nowt. I mean, other than being told that Steve McClaren isn't in consideration, I absolutely know nowt. Even then, things can change quickly so take it with a pinch of salt.

Other names right now seem to include Sean Dyche at the forefront, though Sky Sports claim no approach has been made for the Burnley boss. Martin Jol was briefly mentioned too in some quarters, but that is probably just based on a combination of a rumoured trip to Holland by Sunderland officials (which probably didn't happen), the fact he's available, and that he has a connection with Hamburg, where Lee Congerton used to work.

Paul Clement has gone to Derby after the success of Dick Advocaat seemed to force Sunderland into a re-think about the value of experience, Philip Cocu was a message board rumour that got out of hand which Advocaat went on Dutch TV and blew out of the water, and Armin Veh went the same way after the Mail brought his name into it.

Basically, no sod knows anything. Though, if anyone was interested in my opinion, I suspect we'll go quite left field again and the name of the eventual head coach probably hasn't even been mentioned anywhere yet.

New Players

Theoretically, the Director of Football model should mean that the club are not hamstrung here whilst they search for a new manager, but in reality dangling the carrot of significant input into the summer recruitment process is too big a potential draw for a quality head coach to throw away just yet.

There has also been very little mentioned in the press. Virgil van Dijk of Celtic continues to be heavily linked and described as a long-term target, but aside from him and a few vague links from Italy, including one from Gianluca Di Marzio who claimed a Sunderland interest in Sampdoria striker Stefano Okaka, there has been practically nowt.

Current Players

For once, Sunderland don't have a plethora of players out of contract this summer. Wes Brown and Anthony Reveillere are basically the only two from the first team squad who are free agents in the coming weeks.

According to the Sunderland Echo, Brown will be moved on. It's felt he has to make way in order to allow the club to get some youth, legs and longevity into the defence. That's probably fair enough. It just feels like his time has come.

Reveillere, however, is said to be keen to continue at the club even as a squad player, and the club are happy for him to do so. A one-year extension has been mentioned and is apparently just waiting for the new head coach to approve it.

Loaned Players

This is another traditional Sunderland summer headache but again seems quite simple this year. Ricky Alvarez is supposed to sign, and the club do quite like him, but he is injured and requiring surgery and the club are looking to use that to drop the deal.

Santiago Vergini, who has been at the club for 18 months now, is expected to sign though for a fee of around £2million as part of the loan agreement. He may be joined by Sebastian Coates too, who, according to the Sunderland Echo, is a target for the club after a highly impressive shift in the relegation run-in.

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