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Gossip: Di Canio could return to English football; £10m price set for Kone & West Ham want pair

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The Sunday papers are littered with fresh exit rumours for the pick of Sunderland's relegated squad. And could Paulo Di Canio be set for a return to English football?

Sunderland v Everton - Premier League Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images

Di Canio back to Swindon?

Former Sunderland manager Paulo Di Canio is being tipped for a return to English football.

West Bromwich Albion v Sunderland - Premier League
Di Canio during his spell at Sunderland
Photo by Tony Marshall/Getty Images

The Italian who spent just six months at the helm at the Stadium of Light is presently an outside bet for a comeback at Swindon Town, the club at which he had enjoyed some success before his spell on Wearside.

The Robins dispensed of head coach Luke Williams yesterday with relegation from League One confirmed. Swindon-born Adrian Viveash has been installed as favourite for the job having most recently been coach of Chelsea's development squad.

Tim Sherwood is an obvious 5/1 to succeed Williams with names like Brian McDermott and Alan Stubbs also linked.

Di Canio has not been active in football management since he was ousted from the Stadium of Light and has most recently been working with Sky Sports in Italy.

As for Swindon, just imagine for a second - if you will - Paulo Di Canio installed as manager with Tim Sherwood as Director of Football.


£10m for Lamine Kone

The Daily Mail claim Crystal Palace are weighing up a £10m bid for Sunderland defender Lamine Kone.

Hull City v Sunderland - Premier League
Lamine Kone was restored to the heart of Sunderland's defence for yesterday's trip to Hull
Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images

The report says that Sam Allardyce's side will face competition from West Brom for the services of the Ivorian defender.

Kone has endured a mixed campaign at the heart of David Moyes' defence. A number of poor performances and continued questions about his application and attitude have wiped a third off his value since that £17m bid from Everton last summer.

Most Sunderland fans will be pleased to see a double-figure million pound valuation slapped on the head of the man who simply did not want to be at the Stadium of Light this season.

Capable of producing a powerhouse display when he sets his mind to it, his recent throat-grabbing display against Bournemouth coupled with yesterday's solid showing at Hull City have reminded Sunderland fans of the Lamine Kone who has been missing for so much of this season.

Equally likely to switch off and lose his man with his frequent mind wandering, the 27-year-old may well benefit from a reunion with Sam Allardyce or a switch to the tutelage of defensive master Tony Pulis.

The centre-half signed from Lorient for £5m in January 2016, is certain to leave the Stadium of Light this summer


West Ham to raid Sunderland for Defoe & Pickford

According to the Sunday Express, West Ham will launch a double raid on Sunderland for the Black Cats' two best players this season - Jordan Pickford and Jermain Defoe.

Hull City v Sunderland - Premier League
Jordan Pickford had an excellent game against Hull on Saturday
Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images

Recent reports have suggested Everton were leading the race to land Pickford in a £17m deal but David Moyes was quick to dismiss that figure as 'rubbish' and way off his own valuation.

With the England Under-21 goalkeeper under contract at the Stadium of Light to 2020, Sunderland will expect some big offers before considering any sale.

And Defoe to West Ham has an inevitability to it with the Express suggesting the Hammers have already sounded out the England striker. Reports last week had said the 34-year-old would insist on a three-year deal when selecting his next destination but today's article claims Slave Bilic's side have laid a two-year contract on the table.

Hull City v Sunderland - Premier League
Jermain Defoe hit his first goal in ten games yesterday at the KCOM Stadium
Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images

Bournemouth, West Brom and Crystal Palace appear to be the main competition for Defoe's signature with each of the managers representing the trio recently admitting an interest in the man who has scored over 30 goals in his two-and-a-half years at Sunderland.