Sunderland will aim to bring in four new faces before the transfer window slams shut tonight, but the identity of those still to exit the Stadium of Light in the course of the next few hours remains unclear.
Across media outlets, three names keep cropping up as likely incomings in the gossip columns as Wearside awakes hoping for a lift after a disappointing summer of business so far - which concludes at 11pm tonight.
The Black Cats have left it late to complete their transactions after lengthy pursuits of certain names, but with a net spend of just £1.25m on the seven new faces who have arrived already, few are anticipating any last minute spending spree.
One name linked with the club in the last day or so is that of Manchester City youngster Toisin Adarabioyo. Various newspapers are suggesting that the promising 19-year-old defender is desperate to get some first team experience under his belt, and Sunderland has been touted as a potential destination.
Pep Guardiola appears to still consider Sunderland as a decent berth for his young defenders after last season’s disappointing stint from Jason Denayer.
For his part, Denayer looks set to finally get his wish and return to Galatasaray after appearing to have had his heart set on Turkey rather than Wearside last summer before his boss intervened and sent him to link up with David Moyes at the Stadium of Light.
Adarabioyo is highly rated at the Etihad and recently signed a new deal to keep him at City to 2021. The 19-year-old has made four senior appearances and is a regular in the Citizens Under-23 set-up, but would likely join on a loan rather than a permanent transfer.
Joining him as today’s defensive target is Bournemouth centre-back Marc Wilson who was linked with Sunderland earlier in the summer.
Reports in the south west claim West Brom remain interested in re-signing the 30-year-old who was on loan at the Hawthorns last season, but the Black Cats are waiting to swoop if a move to the Baggies fails to materialise.
That may yet depend on whether Jonny Evans’ big money move to either Arsenal or Manchester City materialises later today, however. It isn’t beyond the realms of possibility that Tony Pulis might take another look at Lamine Kone as a replacement for the former Sunderland loanee of course which makes the two aforementioned targets potential goers.
West Brom have been linked with the Black Cats’ Ivorian defender on-and-off throughout the summer, but news on Sunderland exits is slowly taking shape.
Kone’s central defensive teammate Papy Djilobodji remains surplus to requirements and while the former Nantes man has attracted little interest after a disastrous first year on Wearside, reports in France claim he will sign for Dijon today.
Wahbi Khazri is almost certain to be confirmed at either Rennes or Toulouse at some point today as a loan signing whilst Didier Ndong has supposedly been touted around clubs in England and France in an unseemly parade of Sunderland’s finest wares.
Ross McCormack appears to be widely assumed as still being on Simon Grayson’s radar, but in truth after nigh on six weeks of waiting on the Villa striker since he was first linked to Sunderland, another twist in that protracted tale may yet be on the cards.
All of which leaves a vacancy in our source’s quadruple signing prediction. If we assume one central defender and a striker are a certainty, then surely a winger and a central midfielder are the other two positions likely needing to be filled?
But with so many loose ends and questions still to be answered, predictions seem difficult to quantify.
Four in and two out is the total we’ve been told to expect, but today could equally be filled with busy intrigue as it could pass by in a damp squib.