Turkish newspaper Fotomac says Sunderland have enquired after Galatasary star Wesley Sneijder.
The report says the Black Cats have identified the former Real Madrid, Inter Milan and Ajax attacking midfielder as a potential exchange for in-demand winger Jeremain Lens.
And whilst Galatasaray chiefs are said to have rejected the idea, the notion does indicate some extent of the bargaining power Sunderland hold over Turkey's big-three who are each said to be keen to land Lens in a permanent deal this summer.
The 29-year-old Dutch midfielder on loan at Fenerbahce has been a star of the Turkish Supa Lig during this campaign with four goals and ten assists to his name.
The Istanbul club are desperate to keep hold of Lens after his season-long loan spell expires at the end of the month but supposedly face fierce competition from city-rivals Galatasaray and league leaders Besiktas for his signature.
Whether there was any truth in the tale about Sunderland offering Lens for Sneijder is doubtful of course.
Now 32-years-old, Wesley Sneijder celebrated his 125th cap for the Netherlands in November last year and has made over 100 appearances for Galatasaray since his move from Milan in 2013.
Defoe wants a three year deal on £80,000 a week to depart Sunderland
According to the Daily Mail, Jermain Defoe will demand a three-year deal and £80,000 a week when he departs Sunderland at the end of the season.
The veteran England striker has scored 33 goals in 82 appearances since the Black Cats signed him from Toronto in 2014 and obviously believes he can maintain his top-flight career to the age of 37 at least.
Earning a recall to the national side in a dismal Sunderland side has been a rare highlight on Wearside and the centre-forward has managed to hit 14 goals in a team which has only managed to find the net 26 times in 34 outings this season.
That said, Defoe has struck just once since early-February and that goal came on Engand-duty.
The current highest earner at the Stadium of Light, Defoe's wage demands will match what he presently earns at Sunderland.
West Ham and Bournemouth are the two Premier League clubs most often quoted as being confident of landing the former Tottenham striker, though everyone from Liverpool to Newcastle to Aston Villa to Birmingham City have been mooted as potential destinations in recent days.
Defoe will make his last appearance at the Stadium of Light a week on Saturday as Sunderland take on Swansea in the final home game of the season.
Sunderland 'stars' disappoint schools
The Stadium of Light played host to the Sunderland Schools' Football Association's annual awards ceremony on Wednesday night and was due to be attended by two first team players to join in the celebration of all things youth football in the city.
Except they didn't show up. The club had arranged for Bryan Oviedo and Donald Love to attend the evening but with no explanation offered, dispatched two little-known academy players instead.
Disappointment abounded amongst the kids who had been hoping to spend some time with a couple of first team heroes.
Ever a PR machine to make a bad impression worse, Sunderland AFC allegedly still charged for the room hire and potentially raked in cash from bar sales with no account offered for the switch of 'special guests'.
The back-to-the-community rhetoric uttered by chief executive Martin Bain when he joined the club - which had been universally welcomed - appears to have disappeared along with the public face of the man himself.
Things to look for today
David Moyes will face the media later on to preview tomorrow's trip to Hull City. With the match itself of little interest from a Wearside-perspective, all ears will be tuned in to hear what the Sunderland manager has to say about his future.
Reports in the press this week have variously contradicted each other with titles jockeying to be held as 'in the know' regarding Moyes' and owner Ellis Short's future intentions.
And Sunderland's finances have yet to make a full appearance but may be published in full today. The headlining statements were announced this time last week - before the Bank Holiday weekend - and most had expected that the full set would be made public earlier this week.